The Ministry of Finance has launched anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigations into steel products from China sold on the local market in a bid to protect the interests of Taiwanese firms.
The ministry on Tuesday said in a statement that Chinese products being looked at by the anti-dumping investigation include galvanized steel, carbon steel plates and cold-rolled stainless steel, while the anti-subsidy probe involves hot-rolled stainless steel and cold-rolled carbon steel.
In addition to protecting local steel manufacturers, the probe aims to provide Taiwan with an additional bargaining chip in talks with the US as it seeks an exemption from Washington’s 25 percent tariff on imported steel and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imposed last month, the ministry said.
Taiwan has no intention of getting involved in a trade war between the US and China, but launching a probe into Chinese steel products is expected to ensure that Beijing cannot use Taiwan as a transit point to sell its cheap steel products in the US market, Customs Administration Deputy Director-General Hsieh Ling-yuan (謝玲媛) said.
On March 8, US President Donald Trump signed an order under Section 232 of the US’ Trade Expansion Act of 1962 to impose additional tariffs on imported steel and aluminum.
The duties took effect 15 days after the signing.
Despite negotiations between Taiwanese and US trade officials last month, Taipei was not included on the list of exempt nations.
The government has said that it would continue to seek an exemption through more talks with the US.
After a meeting of the ministry’s tariff review task force on Wednesday last week, Hsieh said the ministry suspects that these Chinese steel products are part of unfair trade practices that could harm Taiwanese manufacturers.
The ministry said it also consulted with the Ministry of Economic Affairs before deciding to launch its investigations into Chinese steel imports.
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