US imposes anti-dumping duties on China

Himalayan News Service

Washington, July 7

The US has imposed punitive duties on shrimp imports from China and Vietnam, saying that the two countries have dumped cheap frozen and canned shrimp and prawns on its market.

The move yesterday came after a preliminary finding of the US commerce department had confirmed that China and Vietnam were exporting shrimps and prawns below the domestic prices. The department is also expected to make a separate determination later this month on whether sanctions could be imposed on shrimp imports from India, Thailand, Brazil and Ecuador. The ruling affects about one billion dollars worth of imports from China and Vietnam.

The duties will range from 7.67 per cent to 112.81 per cent on shrimp from China and between 12.11 per cent and 93.13 per cent on imports from Vietnam. China and Vietnam were considered separately because they are not free market-based economies, department sources said.

In 2003, US imports of shrimp and prawn from China amounted to $419.3 million and from Vietnam $587.7 million. The department’s action followed a petition by the Southern Shrimp Alliance, a group of shrimpers from eight southern states, seeking duties on shrimp from the six nations, including India. Claiming that it has been struggling from rock-bottom prices since 2001, the alliance filed the anti-dumping petition on December 31. Dumping is the import of goods at a price below the home-market or a third-country price or below the cost of production. Although the alliance demanded duties for shrimp and prawns from Brazil, China, India, Thailand and Vietnam Eddie Gordon welcomed the decision.