The US Department of Commerce decided last week to impose an 11.7 percent duty on cut-to-length (CTL) plates imported from Posco, raising hope for moderate levels of duties in pending antidumping cases.
The rate is higher than its November decision of 7.46 percent, but is still considered modest compared to duties imposed on companies from other countries. The duty, which breaks down into a 7.39 percent antidumping tariff and 4.31 percent countervailing duty, is higher than last November’s preliminary decision which imposed a 6.82 percent antidumping tariff and 0.64 percent for countervailing duty.
The US department had been reviewing the case after three US steel firms filed a complaint that Posco and others from 12 countries dumped CTL plates in the market at lower than market prices in addition to receiving illicit government subsidies.
Given the US had imposed 61 percent duty against hot-rolled steel flat products from Posco last year, industry experst had expected the US trade department to raise the duty rate of against CTL plates. The US government at that time levied 58.4 percent and 57.04 percent countervailing duties on cold-rolled and hot-rolled steel products, respectively.
Posco CEO Kwon Oh-joon said earlier this month, "If the US Government decides to levy similar duties in its final determination on our CTL plates as high as it did with our cold- and hot-rolled steel products, we will take the case to the WTO." The Korean steel giant said it will discuss the matter with the Korean government and will decide whether to bring the case to the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Most experts, however, regard the US government’s latest measure against Posco as moderate compared to the duties imposed on other countries’ steelmakers. They said POSCO will probably not file a complaint with the WTO.