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China Faces EU Duties as High as 62.9% on Construction Material

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Feb. 17 (Bloomberg) -- The European Union imposed tariffs as high as 62.9 percent on a construction material from China to help Czech, Latvian and other EU producers vie with cheaper imports that account for more than half the market in Europe.

The duties punish Chinese manufacturers of open-mesh fabrics of glass fibers for selling in the EU below cost, a practice known as dumping. Open-mesh fabrics of glass fibers are used mainly as a reinforcement material in construction.

EU producers including Saint-Gobain Vertex sro of the Czech Republic and Valmieras Stikla Skiedra AS of Latvia suffered “material injury” as a result of dumped imports from China, the European Commission, the 27-nation bloc’s trade authority in Brussels, said today in the Official Journal. The levies, due to take effect tomorrow, are for six months and may be prolonged for five years.

Chinese exporters including Yuyao Mingda Fiberglass Co. and Grand Composite Group expanded their combined share of the EU market for open-mesh fabrics of glass fibers to 51 percent in the 12 months through March 2010 from 38.6 percent in 2006, according to the commission.

The duties are the preliminary outcome of an inquiry that the commission opened last May after a dumping complaint by EU producers, which also include Germany’s Vitrulan Technical Textiles GmbH and Hungary’s Tolnatex Fonalfeldolgozo es Muszakiszovet-gyarto Bt. The levies range from 48.4 percent to 62.9 percent, depending on the Chinese manufacturer.

EU governments, acting on a proposal from the commission, must decide within six months whether to turn the provisional anti-dumping duties against China into “definitive” levies lasting for five years.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jonathan Stearns in Strasbourg, France at jstearns2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Hertling at jhertling@bloomberg.net

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