|A worker operates a steel pressing machine at Hoa Sen Group’s factory in Phú Mỹ I Industrial Zone, Bà Rịa Vũng Tàu Province. — VNA/VNS Photo Tràng Dương|
The case against flat rolled iron or steel products from India, Malaysia and Việt Nam, numbered ADC 370, was initiated in August 2016 by the ADC. It reached a final conclusion in August with no evidencd to suggest Vietnamese steel firms had been selling under market price on Australia’s steel market.
In particular, Việt Nam is no longer accused of subsidising domestic businesses participating in three preferential taxation related programmes. The ADC found that one out of three Vietnamese companies who agreed to cooperate with them during the investigation did not receive any privileges from the alleged programmes.
The ADC also discovered that the other two Vietnamese steel producers and exporters only received an insubstantial amount of monetary support from the Vietnamese Government, and so they decided to close the matter.
Việt Nam’s Hoa Sen Group and Nam Kim Group had been proved by the ADC to have had galvanised steel exported to Australia from during the investigation period within the negligible range of less than two per cent.
The three cooperative steel makers from Việt Nam were Hoa Sen, Nam Kim and China Steel Sumikin Vietnam Joint Stock Company, who collectively accounted for 96 per cent of galvanised steel exported to Australia from Việt Nam during the investigation period.
On August 2016, Australian steel maker BlueScope lodged an application alleging that the Australian industry had suffered material injury caused by exports of galvanised steel to Australia from Việt Nam at dumped and subsidised prices.
BlueScope allegedly claimed that due to Vietnamese firms’ underselling, the Australian steel industry had been injured through loss of sales volume, reduced market share, coupled with price suppression, reduced profitability, employment, and capacity utilisation.
During investigation, BlueScope stated that the Vietnamese galvanised steel industry was subjected to special market conditions, as this company claimed Vietnamese firms had to import most of the main ingredients to produce galvanised steel, which are hot rolled coils.
According to BlueScope, as these hot rolled coils are already subsidised by the exporting countries, they are effectively underpriced and would in turn lower Vietnamese steel firms’ production cost, leading to these firms selling at dumping price on the Australian market.
However, the VCA clearly stated that after the investigation period, ADC found no support for such claim, and cleared Việt Nam off the list of suspected dumping steel exporters.
In conclusion, the ADC said in its final report that a particular market situation did not exist in the domestic galvanised steel market in Viet Nam, such that selling prices in that market were not suitable for normal value purposes, and the cost of HRC in the Vietnamese exporters’ records reasonably reflect competitive market costs.
The ADC also found that Việt Nam’s steel exports to Australia had increased significantly in 2013 and had been steady since 2014 to the end of 2016. — VNS