Firms advised to improve themselves to overcome trade barriers
Updated : Tuesday, July 17, 2018 9:21 AM (GMT+0700)

Amidrising trade barriers, experts have said Vietnamese firms should improve theirawareness of trade remedies and appeals processes.

Producing zinc-coated steel sheets at a factory of Hoa Sen Group in Nghe An province -
Photo: VNA

Chu Thang Trung, DeputyDirector of the Trade Remedies Authority of Vietnam (TRAV) under the Ministryof Industry and Trade (MoIT), said with growing global trade liberalisation,traditional trade barriers like tariffs are gradually removed, commitments tomore open markets are promoted while bilateral and multilateral free tradeagreements increase.

This is why more traderemedies are being used by countries as a legal tool to raise import tariffsand protect domestic production, he said.

He noted that there havebeen 132 trade remedy cases against Vietnamese exports so far. They include 25cases launched by the US, 20 by Turkey and 15 by India. Meanwhile, 78 of themare antidumping cases, 12 subsidies and countervailing measures, 17anti-circumvention cases and 25 are safeguard cases.

Steel products are mostvulnerable to trade remedies as they are involved in almost half of theantidumping cases and 75 percent of countervailing cases. They are followed byfibre and agro-fishery products.

TRAV statistics show that asof May 2018, more than 400 antidumping and countervailing duty orders of the USDepartment of Commerce (DoC), 10 involving Vietnam, had took effect.

Additionally, Vietnam iscurrently subject to 17 anti-circumvention cases of other countries. Sixteen ofthese cases were launched over the products allegedly originating in China.

Recently, the DoC ruled thatcorrosion-resistant steel (CORE) and certain cold-rolled steel flat products(CRS) imported from Vietnam produced from substrate originating in China arecircumventing antidumping and countervailing duty orders on CORE and CRS importedfrom China.

On June 12, the US receiveda request for investigation into the antidumping and countervailing dutycircumvention of Vietnamese CORE, suspected of evading duties on similarproducts from Taiwan (China) and the Republic of Korea, and CRS with suspectedcircumvention of duties on similar products from the Republic of Korea.

Australia also started anantidumping probe into imports of steel wire rod in coil form from Vietnam.

Deputy Director of theMoIT’s Export-Import Department Tran Thanh Hai said slow recognition of thecountry’s market economy status is the main thing exposing Vietnamesebusinesses to trade barriers.

Only 69 countries haverecognised Vietnam’s market economy so far. However, major importers such asthe US, the EU, Canada, Brazil and Turkey haven’t done this, so they havedifferent dumping margin calculation methods, considerably impacting Vietnamesefirms, he added.

Some business associationssaid the media in foreign markets have continually reported on import originfraud, so they suspected that a large volume of items from other countries hadbeen moved to Vietnam to falsify origin of goods to take advantage ofpreferential tariffs on Vietnamese commodities.

James Maeder, Acting DeputyAssistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations at theDOC’s Enforcement and Compliance, said in many trade remedy cases, exportingcompanies successfully proved their innocence and were not subject to duties.

Therefore, exporters shouldhave a good grasp of legal regulations in the countries initiating probes andcomply with procedures in those countries, he said.

Tran Thanh Hai noted thelaunch of investigations on Vietnamese goods by a country may lead to similaractions regarding the same imports from Vietnam by other countries.

MoIT Deputy Minister TranQuoc Khanh said to minimise the risk of being sued and raise their chances ofsuccess in trade remedy cases, businesses should equip themselves withknowledge about relevant regulations and contact associations and Stateagencies to learn about export markets.

He also recommended domesticfirms enhance relations with foreign partners whose interests will also beaffected if trade remedy cases are initiated, diversify markets and productsand compete using high quality and good trademarks instead of low prices.

Additionally, they shouldcooperate with investigation agencies and work together to respond to traderemedy cases, Khanh added.


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