EU Commission gets tough on cheap Chinese steel

EPA/STEPHANIE LECOCQ

EU steel workers protest against China's dumping price in Brussels, Belgium, 09 November 2016.

EU Commission gets tough on cheap Chinese steel


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The EU will impose higher customs duties on Chinese iron and steel products than originally intended, but, somewhat inconsistently, not for the same products from Brazil, Iran, Russia, Serbia and the Ukraine.

The Commission said Thursday that an investigation has confirmed that Chinese hot-rolled flat steel has been sold in Europe at dumping prices.
A spokesperson from the Commission explained that these customs duties, which are “higher” than those imposed on a provisional basis, “will serve to protect producers of European steel from the harmful effects of Chinese dumping on European markets.”

Steel production, currently in a state of worldwide overcapacity, remains a sector subject to stringent monitoring by the EU. The latter has already implemented dozens of trade defence measures on the import of iron and steel products.

The Commission also said that it had decided not to impose provisional duties on the same product from Brazil, Iran, Russia, Serbia and Ukraine, although the investigation of imports from these countries would continue for another six months.

“The decision not to impose provisional measures for imports from Brazil, Iran, Russia, Serbia and Ukraine does not prejudge the final outcome of that investigation,” a Commission spokesman said.

China, the world’s top producer and consumer of steel, said early last year it would shut as much as 150 million tonnes of annual production capacity over the next five years, although capacity actually rose in 2016.

G20 governments recognized in September that steel overcapacity was a serious problem. China has said the problem is a global one

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