China blasts U.S. paper duty




BEIJING, Jun. 1 -- The United States' decision to impose anti-dumping duties on gloss paper imports from China, South Korea and Indonesia on Wednesday will hurt trade relations and won't help American paper manufacturers, analysts say.

    The U.S. Department of Commerce said on Wednesday that it made a preliminary decision to impose duties of 23.19 percent to 99.65 percent on Chinese imports of gloss paper, used in cataloges and premium magazines.

    It is a second blow to Chinese gloss paper exporters in two months. On March 30, the Department of Commerce announced anti-subsidy duties of 10.90 percent to 20.35 percent, which are expected to take effect in August.

    The March charge was the first time the United States launched anti-subsidy acts on a "non-market economy" like China in 23 years.

    The Ministry of Commerce was not immediately available yesterday to comment on the new charge, but said in the past two months that the March accusation went against a 1986 U.S. court ruling.

    An official with Shandong Chenming Paper Holdings Ltd, which is charged 48.07 percent anti-dumping duties and 10.90 percent anti-subsidy duties, declined to comment, but said their general manager in charge of international sales is now in the U.S. to investigate market conditions.

    Li Shixin, a paper industry stock analyst at Guosen Securities, said the impact on Chinese exports will not be big because their exports are very small.

    Less than 4 percent of Chenming's gloss paper exports went to the U.S., but the company is already the second-largest exporter after Gold East Paper (Jiangsu) Ltd.

    According to figures from the Department of Commerce, the value of Chinese gloss paper imports in 2006 was 224 million U.S. dollars, just 5 percent of the total U.S. market. An article on the Shanghai WTO Affairs Consultation Center's website said the combined use of anti-subsidy and anti-dumping duties highlights the trade protectionism in U.S.