UPDATE 1-China slaps duties on some EU and U.S. chemicals

Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:31am EST

* Five-year anti-dumping duties on glycol, diethylene glycol

* China: dumping caused major damage to domestic industry

* Duties affect Eastman, Equistar, LP, BASF

BEIJING, Jan 25 (Reuters) - China has imposed anti-dumping duties on European and U.S. exporters of two chemical solvents, the Commerce Ministry said on Friday, in the latest round of trade restrictions involving China and the West.

The United States and the EU have relied increasingly on anti-dumping and countervailing duty laws in recent years to halt what they say are unfairly priced and subsidized imports from China, the world's second-largest economy.

China has stepped up its own use of trade remedies in the face of what it decries as rising trade protectionism on products ranging from ceramic plates to solar panels.

The five-year anti-dumping duties on glycol and diethylene glycol - widely used solvents imported from Europe and the United States - will come into effect from Jan. 28, the ministry said in a statement posted to its website.

"The glycol and diethylene glycol produced in Europe and the United States is being dumped in China, which has caused substantial damage to China's domestic industry," it said.

The duties range from 9.3 to 18.8 percent on companies such as Eastman Chemical Company, Equistar Chemicals, LP from the United States, and BASF SE from Europe.

BASF said it had previously decided to accept the duties on the two products and not to make its case in the proceedings that led to China's decision, while adding its products in general were priced fairly.

"To actively take part in such proceedings requires considerable efforts and costs which cannot be justified for all products," it said in a statement.

A U.S. trade panel last Friday approved punitive duties for five years on hundreds of millions of dollars of wind towers from China and Vietnam. U.S. producers have complained that unfair Asian competition was forcing them to close plants and shed jobs.

The U.S. Commerce Department earlier in January set preliminary duties ranging up to 154 percent on imports of a food additive and thickening agent from China, and Austria, to offset what it said were unfairly low prices.

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