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EUROFOR calls for stronger steel tariffs

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Dry Bulk,

The European Steel Association (EUROFOR) has called for stronger anti-dumping tariffs on Chinese imports, after a comparison of EU and US measures showed a significant difference.

The comparison shows anti-dumping tariffs of 19 – 22% in the EU on cold-rolled flat steel, while the US has imposed duties of 266% on similar imports. EU duties on stainless cold-rolled steel are 24 – 2%, while the US imposes as 255.8% tariff.

Similar discrepancies exist in the tariffs for organic coated (parallel AS), high fatigue performance rebar, hot-rolled flat and heavy plate steels.

“We are not asking for duties on the scale of the US,” said Axel Eggert, Director General of EUROFER. “Instead we call for EU measures to be a better reflection of this calculated dumping so as to more decisively defend sectors due as outs from aggressive unfair trade practices by third countries.”

EU anti-dumping measures are limited by the World Trade Association’s Lesser Duty Rule (LDR). Under the LDR, authorities “impose duties at a lower level than the margin of dumping but adequate to remove injury”. This effectively removes the potential for punitive imports duties such as those found in the US.

“The EU is the only major region to systematically apply the LDR,” continued Eggert. “Under certain conditions it must be possible to lift the rule. These conditions must be achievable and workable, and be accompanied by a duty calculation based on improved injury margins. We again call on member state leaders to at long last agree to close this gaping hole in Europe’s trade defences.”

EUROFOR is not the only organization to point out the limiting nature of the LDR. In March, Fitch said the EU could “materially reduce Chinese steel exports to the region”, were it allowed to ignore the LDR.

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