New dumping criteria opposed

Beijing has urged the European Union to drop its proposed use of new criteria in calculating dumping, which may not recognize the full market economy status that has been granted to China by nearly 100 countries.

Ministry of Commerce spokesman Shen Danyang said on Thursday that the new method proposed by the European Commission would continue its practice of not treating China as a full market economy regarding China’s foreign trade activities.

“These new measures have no basis in (World Trade Organization) rules, and are likely to be taken as the tools of trade protection. China thinks that countries have different economic development modes and economic management modes because of different national conditions, development phases and cultural traditions,” said Shen.

In Wednesday’s proposal, Brussels introduced the concept of “market distortions” for calculating dumping. The European Commission said several criteria will be considered, such as state policies and influence, the widespread presence of state-owned enterprises, discrimination that favors domestic companies and the independence of the financial sector.

The European Commission submitted the proposed amendment on protection against dumped imports to the European Council and the European Parliament on Wednesday.

Chi Fulin, president of the China Institute of Reform and Development, said the proposal has indicated that the European Commission is “backsliding and playing a dangerous game” in dealing with the China-EU relationship.

“This has long been debated between China and Europe, but the European Commission’s proposal, against a backdrop of rising protectionism in the West, is damaging and unwise,” Chi said. “I think the European Commission should withdraw this before it enters the approval process.”

Pierre Defraigne, executive director of The Madariaga — College of Europe Foundation, a Brussels think tank, said the EU should have treated China as a market economy at an earlier date, but it has failed due to its longtime policy of following the United States regarding China policy.

“I have long called on the EU to treat China as a market economy, but it is regretful that it has not shown such political vision as of today,” Defraigne said.

Ministry of Commerce spokesman Shen said: “These new measures have no basis within the WTO framework and are likely to be taken as the tools of trade protection.

“We urge the EU to use the common WTO practices and rules in the anti-dumping calculation,” he said.

Shen said the EU has a responsibility to take the lead in abiding by WTO rules, to fulfill international obligations, to use trade remedy measures properly and to avoid sending wrong signals of trade protectionism to the world.

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