Country's largest stainless steel maker Jindal Stainless (JSL) has again approached the government for imposition of anti-dumping duty on import of certain specifications of cold rolled flat products from China, European Union (EU) and 8 other countries. Explaining the rationale behind seeking the levy on import of cold rolled flat stainless steel products of width over 1,250 mm, the firm said that the imposition of anti-dumping duty on similar products of lower width has led to circumvention of the duty. Cold rolled flat stainless steel products are used for manufacturing white goods, processed equipment, dairy equipment, automotive components, rail carts, metro coaches, architecture, building and construction, among others.
"We are filing a petition for initiation of investigation and imposition of appropriate duties on import of cold rolled flat products of stainless steel of width above 1,250 mm in India from China, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, South Africa, Malaysia, South Africa, Taiwan, the EU and the US", JSL Senior VP (Corporate Strategy) Rajiv Rajvanshi told PTI. Levy on lower width products has led to the circumvention of anti dumping duty, whereby higher width products are being imported into the domestic market, which is then slit and used for lower width, he added. Last month, the Directorate General of Anti-Dumping (DGAD) in its recommendation to the Department of Revenue suggested anti-dumping duty of up to 57.39 per cent on cold rolled flat stainless steel products of width 600 mm to 1,250 mm.
The duty has been imposed on import of such products from China, Korea and four other countries, and also from the EU for five years. The DGAD, after Sun Set Review on anti-dumping duty on such steel products, recommended that the duty should continue for another five years. This is to protect the domestic industry which is adversely impacted by cheap imports into the country.
Definitive anti-dumping duty was imposed on the import of such steel products in April 2009. But before its expiry, JSL filed an application in January 2014 before DGAD, alleging likelihood of continuation or recurrence of dumping and consequent injury to the industry if duty is removed, and requested its continuation. Countries initiate anti-dumping probes and impose duty to check if domestic industry is being adversely impacted because of a surge in below-cost imports.
Even the DGAD in its findings has said that there are instances of circumvention, Rajvanshi said. Last month, the DGAD in its report on factors affecting domestic prices said the dumped imports from the subject countries, though low in volume, are still entering the Indian market at prices much below the cost of production and selling prices of the domestic industry. This is causing significant price undercutting and underselling in the Indian market, it added.