Japan has urged South Korea to immediately drop anti-dumping duties (AD) levied on Japanese stainless steel bars following a hearing at the World Trade Organization dispute settlement panel. The panel suggested that the extension of protections were breaking rules set by WTO.
The WTO sided with the Japanese claim according to the press release of the WTO. Japanese stainless-steel bars are priced higher than those made domestically by South Korean companies and therefore imported products from Japan were not hurting the Korean markets. The same report also suggested that there is already a large volume of products from China which were available at a lower price in the Korean markets.
WTO has strongly urged South Korea to remove the tariffs as it is against the WTO agreements, said Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobo Kato, according to local media.
South Korea had imposed a 15.36pc tariff on stainless steel bars from Japan starting July 2004 and extended these measures in June 2017 for the third time when Japan decided to file a complaint with the WTO in June 2018. Four months later, the WTO panel was set up after bilateral negotiations failed.
Japanese exports of SS bars to Korea fell by more than 60pc since the beginning of the duties. SS bars are mostly used to manufacture bolts and nuts, valves for cars and machinery.