Wednesday, April 29, 2009

U.S. Loses a Trade Case Over Japanese Steel Imports

U.S. Loses a Trade Case Over Japanese Steel Imports
(New York Times – The Associated Press)

The World Trade Organization ruled against the United States on Friday in a trade case, saying that it continued to apply illegal import duties on Japanese steel products and ball bearings. The 65-page verdict said that Washington had failed to change how it sets fees for goods it suspects are being sold in the United States at below-market value, despite previous rulings that the United States was violating international trade rules.

If there is no appeal, Japan can ask the global trade body to authorize sanctions against American goods to force compliance. It said last year that the fees were costing Japanese industry $248.5 million each year.

The office of the United States trade representative had no comment.

The United States has lost similar disputes with the European Union, Canada and others over how it determines antidumping fees for foreign goods. Governments investigate dumping when they suspect foreign producers are exporting goods at artificially low prices – usually as a result of subsidies or in an attempt to corner a market. WTO panels have consistently found that the United States overestimates how far below market value imports are, and as a result penalizes them with antidumping duties that are too high.

No comments: