Serbia to provide EU evidence against steel dumping allegations: gov’t

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Serbian government believes that its steel manufacturers did not break anti-dumping rules and it will cooperate with the European Commission (EC) to prove so, government press office announced on Sunday.

Serbian government made this statement as an reaction to the recent investigation initiated by The European Steel Association EUROFER.

Press release reads that Serbia will fully cooperate with the EC in relation to the investigation of the alleged dumping price of steel exported to the EU that started on July 7, as a result of EUROFER’s complaint lodged on May 23.

“We expect to get the complete documentation from the EC, with precise information based on which we will prepare our answer, convinced that manufacturers from Serbia did not break the rules of anti-dumping,” government stated in the release.

Investigation started by the EC related to alleged dumping of steel from Brazil, Iran, Russia, Ukraine and Serbia took place only a week after Chinese HeSteel officially took over the country’s sole steel mill in Smederevo, by paying the agreed price of 46 million euros (51.6 million U.S. dollars) and announcing plans to invest at least 300 million euros (337.6 million dollars) to turn it into one of the most competitive steel mills in Europe.

In the period from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016 to which the complaints relate, the steel mill was operating under interim management of HPK Engineering, company appointed by the Serbian government to professionally run the steel mill until the buyer shows up.

Anti-dumping procedure was started because, according to the complaint submitted to the EC, EUROFER on behalf of producers “provided evidence that imports of the product under investigation from the countries concerned have increased overall in absolute terms and in terms of market share,” and that “the volume and the prices of the imported product under investigation have had, among other consequences, a negative impact on the quantities sold, the level of prices charged and the market share held by the Union industry.”

According to the text of the EUROFER’s complaint, the alleged dumping resulted in “substantial effects on the overall performance, the financial situation and the employment situation of the Union industry.”

However the complaint continues that in case of Serbia in absence of reliable data on domestic prices, the allegation of dumping is based on a comparison of a constructed normal value with the export price of the product under investigation when sold for export to the Union.

Press release of the Serbian government reads that the country will provide all necessary information and that it believes that the EC will accept these arguments.

Source; Xinhuanet