Sat, Apr 21, 2012 - Page 11 News List

Fraud investigation recovers 9m euros in customs duties

Staff writer, with CNA

The European Anti-Fraud Office has discovered a network of companies that fraudulently imported Chinese tube and pipe fittings via several Asian countries to evade high EU customs duties.

The discovery led to the recovery of 9 million euros (US$11.8 million) in customs duties — 6.5 million euros of which were related to imports from Taiwan and India — and it was the result of investigations carried out in cooperation with Indian and Taiwanese customs, according to a statement released by the office on Thursday.

NOT MADE IN JAPAN

In the investigation, a shipment of tube and pipe fittings claimed to be made in Japan was found to have been loaded in the Chinese port of Dalian and then routed via Japan to the EU, the office said.

That led to the detection of further fraudulent imports into the EU from India and Taiwan with false commercial documentation of origin, the office added.

Also, a Taiwanese exporting producer of tube and pipe fittings was found to have channeled the Chinese products into the EU market. Taiwanese authorities requested that the company pay approximately 1.8 million euros to cover the import duties, plus a fine for breaching the country’s customs laws, the office said.

In 1996, the EU imposed an anti-dumping duty rate of 58.6 percent on certain Chinese tube and pipe iron and steel fittings. The duty was later extended to include imports from Taiwan, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and the Philippines as a result of circumvention.

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