US requests talks with China over steel duties

Washington, Jan 14: US Trade Representative Michael Froman said Monday that his country has requested China to enter into a consultation over duties on US high-tech steel exports following a World Trade Organisation (WTO) dispute, Xinhua reported.

In November 2012, the WTO concluded that China imposed duties on US exports of grain oriented flat-rolled electrical steel ( GOES) in breach of both procedural and substantive WTO rules. China has re-determined its duties on GOES from the US to comply with WTO ruling since July last year.

The US reviewed the re-determination and considered it still failed to conform to the WTO rule, said Office of the US Trade Representative.

The office noted that seeking a consultation marked the first time the US has initiated a proceeding in the WTO to challenge a claim by China that it has complied in a WTO dispute.

“The WTO found that China’s duties are inconsistent with WTO rules. We were right, and China was wrong,” said Froman, adding “unfortunately, it appears that China has not corrected those inconsistencies”.

GOES is a high-tech, high-value magnetic specialty steel that is used primarily by the power generating industry in transformers, rectifiers, reactors, and large electric machines.

IANS