Epoch Times published an article stating that the EU will impose an anti-dumping tariff on China’s steel products. The article said that, on June 9, the EU announced that it will impose a high tariff on Hot Rolled Steel Flat Bars. On June 2, one week earlier, EU leaders had a summit meeting with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang in Brussels. The summit happened to take place when the U.S. decided to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. It was expected, under the circumstances, that cooperation between China and the EU would improve and both sides would be willing to work with each other. However the outcome of the meeting did not turn out that way. The EU maintains it has strong grounds for its anti-dumping policy and demands changes from China, which has made China quite unhappy. According to an article in Politico, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker stated that “Chinese steel overcapacity is now more than double the EU’s total capacity. If we fail to make progress … the only winners will be political forces that oppose the progress we seek.” Section 15 of the Protocol on the Accession of the PRC expired last December. According to the policy, China would have been granted Market Economy Status by then. It would have meant that Western countries should not impose anti-dumping tariffs on China. However, China has faced resistance from the U.S. and from European countries. So far, it has not been granted this status.
According to Asahi Shimbun, a Japanese media, China was denied qualification for Market Economy Status during the EU and China Summit on June 2. China has expressed strong discontent about it. Li Keqiang even refused to publicize the joint announcement both parties made on the Paris Agreement.
Meanwhile Deutsche Welle published an article that stated that the EU will impose a 35.9 percent tariff on Hot Rolled Steel Flat Bars made in China. Currently the EU has trade protection measures on over 100 products. Of those, 40 of them are on steel products and among those 15 of them come from China. Hot Rolled Steel Flat Bars can be used to build ships, gas containers, and energy pipes. According to the EU, the 35.9 percent temporary tariff will be in effect for five years starting on June 10.
Epoch Times, June 11, 2017
Deutsche Welle, June 9, 2017
Politico, “EU-China trade tensions undermine climate unity, June 2, 2017