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China may appeal over WTO ruling on EU X-ray imports

By Song Shengxia (Global Times)

08:17, February 28, 2013

China will reserve the right to appeal to the World Trade Organization (WTO) against its ruling that China breached WTO rules by slapping anti-dumping duties on X-ray scanners from the European Union, the Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) said Wednesday.

In a statement posted on its website Wednesday, the ministry said it welcomed some of the findings by the WTO panel that supported China's claims regarding issues such as disclosure before final determination.

"But on other rulings by the panel, China will conduct a serious evaluation and reserve the right to appeal," the statement said.

The WTO released a report Tuesday saying that China's decision to levy anti-dumping duties on X-ray scanners imported from the EU was not based on an objective examination.

"The increasing trade frictions between China and the EU are a result of the great contrast in their economic situations. Such frictions will naturally increase at a time when the EU is struggling with its debt crisis, while China's economic growth continues," Zhao Yongsheng, a visiting scholar with the Institute of European Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times.

"X-ray scanners are niche products targeting a highly specialized market. The ruling will not affect the trade volume between China and the EU, but will harm the interests of specific Chinese companies," said Yao Ling, a researcher with the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation.

MOFCOM decided in January 2011 to impose anti-dumping duties on X-ray scanners from the EU, ranging from 33.5 percent to 71.8 percent for five years.

The ruling came after Chinese firm Nuctech Co filed a complaint with MOFCOM in 2009, asking for the duties to be imposed on X-ray scanners from the EU.

After it failed to reach an agreement with China through consultation, the EU asked the WTO to set up a panel to settle the dispute in December 2011.

Nuctech could not be reached for comment Wednesday. X-ray scanners are used by railways, customs and other government agencies for security checks.

In 2012, China won rulings in three cases against the EU and US at the WTO, including a dispute over the EU's anti-dumping duties on Chinese leather shoes. It also lost three cases, including the ruling that China UnionPay holds a monopoly over yuan payment cards, data provided by MOFCOM to the Global Times showed Wednesday.

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