The European Union has started an anti-dumping investigation into imports of steel towers from China used for wind turbines, a few days after having imposed tariffs on Chinese aluminum imports.
The investigation follows a complaint by the European Wind Tower Association, which says the volumes and low prices of the towers have hit European producers, Reuters reports.
According to the european bloc’s official journal, the European Commission, which coordinates trade policy for the 27-nation EU, has concluded there is sufficient evidence of dumping to justify the start of proceedings.
Dumping in an international trading context is when the exporter puts a lower price on goods in the importing country than it has in its own domestic market. It is usually done to gain a market advantage where they are trading abroad.
Last week, the European Union announced it will impose duties of up to 48% on imports of aluminium extrusions from China midway through an investigation into whether Chinese producers are selling at unfairly low prices.
The duties, ranging from 30.4 to 48.0%, are already being applied, on a provisional basis, meaning they will apply until the investigation’s expected completion by April. At that point, the bloc could apply duties for five years.
The European Commission, which coordinates trade policy in the 27-nation European Union, opened an investigation in February into the product widely used in transport, construction and electronics after a complaint from industry body European Aluminium.
The duties will be of 30.4% for Guangdong Haomei New Materials Co Ltd and Guangdong King Metal Light Alloy Technology Co Ltd, while Press Metal International Ltd will see duties of 38.2%.
Other “cooperating” companies would face duties of 34.9% and material from all other companies would see charges of 48%.
China, meanwhile, has previously complained about the EU’s “protectionist” tactics in the steel sector in a long-running dispute. Wang Hejun, head of the Ministry of Commerce’s Trade Remedy and Investigation Bureau called for the EU to treat China “fairly” as a trading partner as far back as 2017, after an EU ruling to impose anti-dumping duties on hot-rolled stainless steel coil from China.
The EU has to date started 48 trade defence investigations regarding steel, 28 of them concerning products from China.