Answer – China's market economy status – E-002044/2016

The Commission is currently looking into the various implications of the expiration of certain provisions of the Protocol of accession of China to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) relating to the treatment of China in anti-dumping investigations. In parallel, the proposal to modernise the EU’s trade defence instruments (TDI), which was adopted by the Commission in April 2013, is currently pending with the co-legislator.

1. Regarding China, the Commission continues its assessment of the consequences of the expiry on 11 December 2016 of certain provisions in the Protocol of Accession of China to the WTO. Various options are being examined in the framework of a full impact assessment. The public consultation was carried out and closed on 20 April. A stakeholders’ meeting was organised on 17 March and a meeting with the social partners on 15 April.

2. The legislative proposal to modernise EU’s trade defence instruments contains several elements which aim at improving the efficiency of the current system. Of particular relevance is the proposal not to apply the lesser duty rule in cases of structural raw material distortions. In its recent Steel Communication(1), the Commission has indicated additional ways in which the effectiveness of TDI could be further improved.

3. The Commission is aware that the European Parliament is in favour of the TDI modernisation proposal and that it has adopted a legislative resolution in April 2014. Thus far, the Council has not been able to reach a position on the matter.

(1) ‘Steel: Preserving sustainable jobs and growth in Europe’ (COM(2016)0155 final of 16.3.2016).

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