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Electrical steel duty cut said not enough

Keywords: Tags  electrical steel, WTO, AK Steel, ATI, dumping duties, subsidy, Catherine Ngai


NEW YORK — China has lowered some duties on imports of grain-oriented electrical steel from the United States following a World Trade Organization (WTO) ruling, but the U.S. industry claims the move is not enough to level the playing field.

Since losing at the WTO last year, China re-investigated the anti-dumping and countervailing duties it issued to U.S. steel companies, particularly West Chester, Ohio-based AK Steel Corp. and ATI Allegheny Ludlum Corp., Pittsburgh, China’s Ministry of Commerce said in a July 31 ruling on its website.

AK Steel said the new determination fails to comply with the WTO’s rulings and recommendations. "We are disappointed that the government of China has chosen to disregard its WTO obligations, and we will continue to urge the U.S. government to seek further rulings that China has not complied with the DSB (dispute settlement body) recommendations and rulings," AK Steel chairman, president and chief executive officer James L. Wainscott said in a statement.

Under the new determination, dumping margins remained unchanged for AK Steel at 7.8 percent and ATI at 19.9 percent, while the rate for all other U.S. companies was lowered to 13.8 percent from 44.6 percent. Subsidy margins were reduced to 3.4 percent from 11.7 percent for AK Steel, 12 percent for ATI and 64.8 percent for all other U.S. companies.

A.K. Steel said it would ask the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) to seek WTO authorization to impose additional retaliatory tariffs against imports from China until the electrical steel duties are removed.

The USTR filed an appeal in 2010, claiming China conducted the injury investigation and applied duties in a way that was inconsistent with its international obligations (amm.com, Sept. 15, 2010). Last year, the WTO ruled largely in favor of the United States, although China has tried to appeal the process (amm.com, June 15, 2012).

An ATI spokesman could not be reached for comment.


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