The Australian Steel Institute has proclaimed that they unanimously support the Labor Party’s recently revealed plans to reform the country’s anti-dumping system.
As Australia’s leading steel supply chain representative, the Australian Steel Institute (ASI) speaks on behalf of many companies involved in steel-related building, construction, engineering and manufacturing. As part of its remit it provides marketing, technical leadership and policy advocacy to governments on both sides of Parliament.
As part of the reforms that the Labor Party is proposing, the Anti-Dumping Commission would receive additional funding to investigate potential trade rule breaches, take investigations into Safeguards from the Productivity Commission, triple penalties received by those who try to go around anti-dumping measures, allow Australian businesses who are seeking anti-dumping protection to put forward suggestions for the form of duty applied, and implement a 30 day time limit for review applications.
Dumping is a critical problem for the local industry. It refers to the practice of foreign manufacturers selling products, most often steel, to Australian markets at a cost that is lower than what it took to make, which drives local steel industry prices down further. It’s currently estimated that 80 anti-dumping measures are taking place, with a further 94 investigations ongoing into the practice. With a global oversupply of steel weakening overall prices, the practice of dumping can be particularly catastrophic for local markets.
ASI Chief Executive Tony Dixon said, “Dumping is cheating, and the steel industry has been negatively impacted by the practice over recent years. The Labor Party’s reforms would strengthen the Australian anti-dumping system and support local manufacturing.”
Labor are proposing an extra $3.5 million per year to go into the Anti-Dumping Commission, which will be enough to hire an extra 30 staff to comprise an entirely new investigation division.
The United States has recently enacted a swathe of tariffs applied against foreign steel in order to protect its local prices, and the ASI predicts that this will make Australia a more likely target if further protections are not enacted.
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Image: Financial Tribune