March 15, 2018 / 3:40 PM / 2 years ago

U.S. trade panel says imports of aluminum foil from China harm U.S. producers

FILE PHOTO: An employee looks at an aluminium foil roll being lifted at a plant in Binzhou, Shandong province, China May 16, 2017. REUTERS/Stringer/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. International Trade Commission said on Thursday it had made a final finding that imports of aluminum foil from China hurt U.S. producers, a move that locks in place hefty duties of up to 188 percent on Chinese exporters.

The “final phase” finding came in an anti-dumping and anti-subsidy case brought by the Aluminum Association Trade Enforcement Working Group.

The final finding means the U.S. Commerce Department can put in place for five years antidumping and countervailing duties it announced on Feb. 27 on a number of Chinese firms.

The department announced that dumping margins would range from 48.64 percent to 106.9 percent and anti-subsidy rates from 17.14 percent to 80.97 percent.

The action is separate from U.S. President Donald Trump’s imposition of a global aluminum tariff of 10 percent and a global steel tariff of 25 percent.

China expressed “strong dissatisfaction” after the U.S. Commerce Department announced its findings in February, and the country’s Ministry of Commerce said it would take steps to protect its legal rights and interests in the matter.

Wang Hejun, the head of the ministry’s Trade Remedy and Investigation Bureau, said in the statement the U.S. finding “disregarded WTO rules” and would seriously damage China’s aluminum foil exporters.

Reporting by Tim Ahmann; Editing by David Alexander and Susan Thomas

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