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China Decided to Lift Anti-Dumping Duties Measures Imposed on High-performance Stainless Steel Seamless Tubes Originating from Japan

On August 22, 2016, the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China announced that it will lift the anti-dumping duties measures imposed on high-performance stainless steel seamless tubes originating from Japan.

The WTO Appellate Body report, released in October 2015, fully upheld Japan’s claims and decided that China’s measures were inconsistent with the WTO Anti-Dumping Agreement. In response, China decided to lift the measures on the products from Japan.

1. Outline

On November 8, 2012, China finalized the decision to impose anti-dumping duties measures on high-performance stainless steel seamless tubes originating from Japan for five years from that date (hereinafter referred to as the “measures”). In response, on April 11, 2013, Japan requested that the WTO establish a panel under the WTO Agreement regarding the measures and a panel under the WTO Agreement was established on May 24, 2013.

The panel and the WTO Appellate Body examined the issue, and the former released a report in February 2015 and the latter released the same on October 14, 2015. The WTO Appellate Body fully upheld Japan’s claims and presented a ruling that China’s imposition of the measures was inconsistent with specific provisions including paragraphs 1, 2, 4 and 5 of Article 3 of the WTO Anti-Dumping Agreement (determination of injury and causation) because China failed to appropriately take into consideration the differences in grade between the high-performance products exported from Japan and products manufactured in China, and the fact that they were not in a competitive relationship. The WTO Appellate Body requested that China bring its measures into conformity with the WTO Anti-Dumping Agreement.

In response, China decided to lift the measures on the products from Japan.

2. Significance of the ruling

The significance of this issue lies in the fact that the WTO Appellate Body ruled that China’s imposition of the measures was inconsistent with the WTO Anti-Dumping Agreement because China decided that exports from Japan caused injury to the domestic industry in China without appropriately taking into consideration the differences in grade between the high-performance products exported from Japan and products manufactured in China, and the fact that the products exported from Japan cannot serve as alternatives for those Chinese products in Chinese markets.
The fact that China decided to follow the WTO recommendation and lift the imposition of its anti-dumping duties re-confirms the effectiveness of the WTO dispute settlement procedures. In addition, this clarification of the WTO rules is highly effective in curbing the imposition of further, inappropriate anti-dumping duties imposed under arbitrary or unclear manner, when there is a trend that emerging countries are increasingly imposing anti-dumping duties on products from overseas.

3. References

  1. Description of high-performance stainless steel seamless tubes
    • “High-performance stainless steel seamless tubes” refers to special, high-value-added steel, often used for ultra-supercritical pressure boilers for coal-fired power plants. Annual export value of the high-performance stainless steel seamless tubes from Japan to China was about 140 million US dollars in 2014.
  2. Details of the decision by the WTO Appellate Body
    • The WTO Appellate Body report decided that China’s measures were inconsistent with the WTO Anti-Dumping Agreement as follows and recommended that China bring its measures into conformity with that Agreement.
      1. The WTO Appellate Body upheld the ruling of the panel that China’s imposition of anti-dumping duties was inconsistent with paragraphs 1 and 5 of Article 3 of the WTO Anti-Dumping Agreement because in its determination of injury and causation, China failed to appropriately take into consideration the differences in grade between the high-performance products exported from Japan and products manufactured in China and the fact that they were not in a competitive relationship.
      2. China’s measures were also inconsistent with paragraphs 2 (examination of the effect of the dumped imports on prices) and 4 (examination of the impact of the dumped imports on the domestic industry) of Article 3 of the WTO Anti-Dumping Agreement because China failed to appropriately take into consideration the differences in grade between the products exported from Japan and products manufactured in China and the fact that they were not in a competitive relationship.
  3. Anti-dumping duty
    • An anti-dumping duty is a customs duty imposed on certain products by an importing country where it is demonstrated that the export price of the product is less than its selling price destined for consumption in the exporting country and the dumped imports are causing injury to the competing industry in the importing country. The amount of anti-dumping duty cannot exceed the difference between the export price of the product and the domestic selling price of the like product in the exporting country.
  4. WTO dispute settlement procedures
    • If consultations fail to settle a dispute, based on the request from the complaining party, the WTO panel examines the matter and makes rulings regarding the consistency with the WTO Agreement. A party that is not satisfied with the panel rulings may appeal to the WTO Appellate Body.
  5. Past news releases regarding this issue
    1. Japan Requests the Establishment of a Panel under the WTO Agreement regarding China’s Measure Imposing Anti-Dumping Duties on Certain High-performance Stainless Steel Seamless Tubes from Japan
      METI news release on April 11, 2013
      http://www.meti.go.jp/english/press/2013/0411_02.html
    2. A Panel under the WTO Agreement was Established regarding China’s Measure of Imposing Anti-Dumping Duties on Certain High-performance Stainless Steel Seamless Tubes from Japan
      METI news release on May 24, 2013
      http://www.meti.go.jp/english/press/2013/0524_01.html
    3. The WTO Panel Came to a Decision that China’s Measure which Imposes Anti-Dumping Duties on Certain High-performance Stainless Steel Seamless Tubes from Japan is Inconsistent with the WTO Agreement
      - Release of WTO Panel Report on Imposing Anti-Dumping Duties by China -
      METI news release on February 16, 2015 http://www.meti.go.jp/english/press/2015/0213_01.html
    4. Japan Appealed to the WTO Appellate Body regarding China’s Measure Imposing Anti-Dumping Duties on Certain High-performance Stainless Steel Seamless Tubes from Japan
      METI news release on May 20, 2015
      http://www.meti.go.jp/english/press/2015/0520_01.html
    5. The WTO Appellate Body Confirmed that China’s Measures Imposing Anti-Dumping Duties on Certain High-performance Stainless Steel Seamless Tubes from Japan were Inconsistent with the WTO Agreement
      Release of WTO Appellate Body Report on China’s Measures Imposing Anti-Dumping Duties -
      METI news release on October 15, 2015
      http://www.meti.go.jp/english/press/2015/1015_01.html

Release date

August 22, 2016

Divisions in Charge

General Information on WTO dispute settlement
Multilateral Trade System Department & WTO Compliance and Dispute Settlement, Trade Policy Bureau
Information on the steel industry
Metal Industries Division, Manufacturing Industries Bureau
Information on Japan-China economic relationship
Northeast Asia Division, Trade Policy Bureau

Related Information

Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
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