The Korea Trade Commission (KTC) on Friday last week launched an investigation into exporters of certain steel products from Taiwan and Italy to determine whether they have sold their products to South Korea at unfairly low prices.
The probe into stainless steel bar exporters would examine whether the companies employed dumping practices from July 1, 2016, to June 30 last year, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said on Saturday.
The commission would take into consideration pricing data and look at South Korean firms’ operations from Jan. 1, 2014, to Dec. 31 last year to determine whether South Korean companies have suffered material damages from unfair trade practices, the ministry said.
It did not disclose which Taiwanese companies have been named by the commission as mandatory respondents.
The ministry said it has informed industrial associations of the investigation and urged Taiwanese firms to respond to the commission’s questions without delay.
The exporters would face punitive tariffs if the commission determines that they dumped stainless steel bars in South Korea, it said.
Stainless steel bars are used in a wide range of products, such as sophisticated precision equipment, auto parts, machinery, aircraft components, medical equipment and building materials.
Taiwan last year sold US$25.95 million worth of stainless steel bars to South Korea, accounting for 17.97 percent of that nation’s total steel bar imports, the ministry said, citing Global Trade Atlas data.
Taiwan was the second-largest stainless steel supplier to South Korea last year, trailing only Japan, which accounted for 24.32 of South Korea’s steel imports with sales of US$35.12 million.
India, Italy and Germany held 17.48 percent, 14.72 percent and 8.83 percent of market share respectively, the data showed.
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