EU requests WTO panel on Chinese duties on steel tubes

Reuters, Friday 16 Aug 2013

The European Union request World Trade Organisation to solve trade dispute with china over imported stainless steel tubes

The European Union has asked the World Trade Organisation to rule in a dispute over Chinese anti-dumping duties on imports of high-performance stainless steel seamless tubes from the EU.

The EU lodged a complaint at the WTO over the duties in June and consultations were held in July but they did not resolve the dispute and the EU is now asking the WTO to set up a panel to rule on the case.

The case is one of a series of high-profile trade disputes that have broken out between China and the 28-nation EU, led by a quarrel over alleged dumping of Chinese solar panels in Europe that was defused in July.

"The EU continues its fight against unjustified Chinese trade defence measures, which do not comply with WTO rules and often seem to be motivated by retaliation," EU trade spokesman John Clancy said in a statement on Friday.

EU exports to China of high-performance stainless steel seamless tubes, used in power plants, were worth around 90 million euros ($119 million) in 2009, but fell to under 20 million euros around the time that China imposed definitive anti-dumping duties in November 2012, the EU says.

Since then, it said the duties of 9.7 percent to 11.1 percent imposed on imports of steel tubes from the EU were significantly hampering access to the Chinese market.

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