The European Commission has launched an investigation into alleged dumping of stainless steel into the European Union by Chinese and Taiwanese producers. EUROFER Director General Gordon Moffat welcomes the European Commission’s initiation against imports of stainless steel cold rolled flat products (SSCR) from China and Taiwan.
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EUROFER filed a complaint in mid-May on behalf of companies representing a major portion of the Community production. Imports of stainless steel cold rolled flat products (SSCR) from China and Taiwan were sold at dumped prices and cause significant injury to the EU stainless steel industry.
“During the last three years, the European producers of stainless steel flat rolled products carried-out significant restructuring operations to reduce over-capacities, improve their performance and maintain their competitive edge in the global market. But over the same period China has built up huge capacities that are economically unjustified. Their increased output cannot be absorbed domestically. As a result they are flooding the markets which are still unprotected like the EU. Taiwan has also a structural over-capacity problem and excess production which they download on export markets, particularly in Europe”, says EUROFER Director General Gordon Moffat.
Quantities of stainless steel cold rolled flat products (SSCR) from China and Taiwan into Europe have been rising at an alarming rate in 2013 although EU consumption remained rather stable. Their combined market share has grown by 65 per cent between the years 2010 and 2013 (year 2013 being the investigation period) and this expansion went on in spring (Q1/14) at the expense of the EU producers. The market share of China and Taiwan was even in excess of 14 per cent in the month of April 2014.
“This is no longer sustainable”, says Moffat. The imports of SSCR from the two countries, China and Taiwan, significantly undercut the prices of the EU producers and prices from other third countries. “The complaint shows that the dumping margin from these two countries reaches 20 per cent. Both from the volume and pricing aspects, the EU industry is suffering material injury as a result of these dumped imports and the causal link is obvious“, says Gordon Moffat, Director General of EUROFE.
“Anti-Dumping measures on imports of SSCR from PR China and Taiwan will be in line with the European Commission’s Steel Action Plan, ensuring fair conditions of competition and taking action against unfair trade practices“, adds Moffat.
The products covered by the Anti-Dumping proceedings are stainless steel cold rolled flat products in all stainless steel grades, dimensions, formats and surface finishes.
Facts and Figures (Source: Reuters)
EU imports of cold-rolled stainless steel sheet from China and Taiwan totaled 758 million euros (605.377 billion pounds) last year, according to Eurostat, a 10-fold increase from the value in 2002. EU production in 2012, the last year for which data is available, was worth 23.6 billion euros. According to China’s General Administration of Customs, Chinese exports of steel, including stainless, hit 8.07 mln tonnes in May, the highest ever level and an annual increase of 41.5 percent in the year to date. Meanwhile, China produced just over half of the world’s stainless steel last year, despite weak demand and pricing trends, according to research by Steel Market Intelligence GmbH.