The European Commission found that Beijing illegally subsidizes Chinese steel producers.

china dumping steelBEIJING (Reuters) – The European Union will not be drawn into a trade war with China, the EU’s ambassador to the country said on Wednesday, a day after trade sources said the European Commission found that Beijing illegally subsidizes Chinese steel producers.

The Commission is investigating 37 dumping and subsidy cases, 21 of them involving China, and Tuesday’s preliminary finding asked EU members to back punitive tariffs against Chinese steel firms, a move that angered Beijing.

But EU Ambassador to China Markus Ederer said he was puzzled by and “flatly rejects” reports of atrade war between the two economies which together comprise the world’s largest trade relationship.

“I don’t want this to become a self-fulfilling prophecy. First of all, it takes two for a war, and I can declare here that the EU is not available for a trade war with China,” Ederer told a news briefing.

China’s Commerce Ministry spokesman Shen Danyang on Wednesday called the Commission’s investigation into steel subsidies “unreasonable”.

“Such a conclusion based on unreasonable investigations will seriously hurt Chinese companies’ legal rights and interests,” Shen said at a separate news briefing.

European anti-dumping and anti-subsidy duties affect less than 1 percent of Chinese exports to Europe, Ederer said.

“China, as well, has investigations, as you know, into European exports to China. We have no issue with that as long as it is under WTO rules,” he said, adding that observers should not “over dramatize” the issue.

The Commission’s ongoing investigations include a study of the alleged dumping of 21 billion euros of solar panels and components by Chinese producers. A preliminary ruling on that case, the Commission’s largest investigation to date, is due in the first half of 2013.

The European Union is China’s biggest trading partner while for the EU, China is second only to the United States.

(Reporting by Michael Martina and Aileen Wang; Editing by Jeremy Laurence)

WTO hands Obama victory in U.S.-China steel case

Reuters/Reuters – A worker checks on coils of steel at a factory in Dalian, Liaoning province

GENEVA/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The World Trade Organization barred China on Thursday from imposing duties on certain U.S. steel exports, siding with U.S. President Barack Obama in a dispute with Beijing over a type of steel made in two election battleground states.

The case involved duties imposed by China on “grain-oriented electrical steel,” which is used in the cores of high-efficiency transformers, electric motors and generators. The steel is made by AK Steel Corp of Ohio and ATI Allegheny Ludlum of Pennsylvania.

Although the specialty steel case is tiny compared with other trade disputes with Beijing, the WTO ruling gave Obama a timely win as he defends himself against accusations by his Republican opponent, Mitt Romney, that he is soft on China.

“Today we are again plainly stating that we will continue to take every step necessary to ensure that China plays by the rules and does not unfairly restrict exports of U.S. products,” Obama administration trade representative Ron Kirk said in a statement.

China’s Ministry of Commerce had no immediate comment on the ruling, which arrived late in the evening in Beijing.

When the Obama administration filed the case, the volume of specialty steel trade with China was in the range of $250 million. That pales in comparison with the auto and auto-parts trade at issue in the most recent case Washington filed against China in September. The volume of auto parts trade alone amounted to about $12 billion in 2011, according to the Alliance for American Manufacturing.

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ITC Votes to Revoke OJ Anti-Dumping Order


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LORIDA CITRUS MUTUAL
P.O. Box89 • Lakeland,FL 33802
ph:(863) 682-1111   www.flcitrusmutual.com


LAKELAND, Fla. (March 14, 2012) – The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) Wednesday struck a blow toFlorida citrus growers by voting to revoke the anti-dumping order on certain Brazilian orange juice processors.

The ITC said removing the anti-dumping order would not materially harm the Florida citrus grower despite increased Brazilian production, declining U.S. consumption and rapidly escalating costs of production.

An anti-dumping order covering three major Brazilian orange juice processors – Cutrale Citrus Juice, Citrosuco Paulista and Louis Dreyfus – has been in place since 2006. Every five years, the United States conducts a “sunset review” to determine whether duties should remain in place on Brazilian OJ or be revoked, taking into consideration how that would impact the U.S. industry, including Florida growers.

The decision came after Florida Citrus Mutual (FCM) spent the past six months building a case against the Brazilians.

“Florida Citrus Mutual is extremely disappojnted with this decision and we will review next steps including an appeal,” said Michael W. Sparks, FCM’s executive VP/CEO. “Over the past five years Brazilian processors have continued to dump cheap product into the United States as their residual market and I cannot see any reason why they would stop, especially if the anti-dumping order goes away.”

Dumping is bad because it can drive domestic producers out of business while destabilizing world markets.U.S.firms can file an anti-dumping petition with the International Trade Commission, which investigate the matter.

If a domestic industry can prove foreign producers are selling product for less than “normal value,” including below the cost of production, then anti-dumping deposits can be imposed by the government.

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China tells U.S. to axe anti-subsidy probe on tires

BEIJING (Reuters) – China urged the United States on Wednesday to halt anti-subsidy investigations into Chinese tires and other products since Washington does not recognize China as a market economy.

The call by China’s Commerce Ministry was issued after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit dismissed an anti-subsidy lawsuit submitted by the U.S. Department of Commerce that targeted tires imported from China.

“For many years, the United States has been launching anti-subsidy investigations against China which go against World Trade Organisation rules and are not supported by U.S. laws,” theCommerce Ministry said.

“We hope the United States can correct its mistakes as soon as possible and not launch an anti-subsidy probe against China if it does not recognize China’s market economy status.”

China is deemed a “non-market” economy under trade terms negotiated in 2001 as part of its entry into the World Trade Organisation.

That status has troubled Beijing, which says Chinese exporters are unfairly penalized when trading partners pursue anti-subsidy or anti-dumping cases against them.

To build an anti-subsidy or anti-dumping case against China, a country can substitute Chinese prices with those of another nation, and one where manufacturing costs are higher, in order to provide supporting evidence for the case.

China says this is unfair because it hinders its export sector, a point reiterated by the Commerce Ministry on Wednesday.

“The abuse of trade measures is a typical behavior of protectionism,” the ministry said.

Ties between the United States and China, the world’s two biggest economies, have been fraught with a growing list of trade and investment disputes as rising global economic uncertainty raises tension.

(Reporting by Aileen Wang and Koh Gui Qing; Editing by Ken Wills and Ron Popeski)

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