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Comment on inquiry into dumping of steel and aluminium products

“The Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) welcomes the announcement by the Industry, Innovation and Science Minister of an inquiry into the dumping of imported metal in the Australian market; the effectiveness of existing arrangements; and possible modifications to these arrangements.  It is important that we have arrangements in place that ensure the competitiveness of Australian industry and that we maintain level playing fields for businesses throughout our metal industry supply chains,” Ai Group Chief Executive, Innes Willox, said today.

“It is important to note that anti-dumping actions and countervailing measures are specifically sanctioned by the WTO. The Anti-Dumping Agreement allows countries to take action against imports from countries allegedly exporting at dumped prices. Australia’s anti-dumping regime can serve a purpose similar to that served by predatory pricing provisions of Australian competition law.  Ai Group believes that Australia should have effective and fair anti-dumping arrangements.

“It is also critical to recognise that across the business community there are clear tensions that arise in relation to low-priced imports and anti-dumping arrangements.  Many downstream companies who do or can use imported metal compete in the domestic market against imports produced with low-priced metal available in the source countries.  Similarly, for downstream businesses who are also exporters, access to low-priced, imported aluminium and steel can make a material difference to the competitiveness in export markets.

“It is therefore critical that the design and operation of anti-dumping arrangements provide timely and effective remedies to producers unfairly affected by dumping as well as ensuring procedural fairness that allows the full range of perspectives to be brought to bear in the consideration of remedies in the face of low-priced imports,” Mr Willox said.

 

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