Indonesians at WTO to contest EU biodiesel anti-dumping duties

31.03.2017

A delegation from Indonesia is at the World Trade Organisation in Geneva to appeal against anti-dumping duties imposed by the EU against Indonesian and Argentinian biodiesel in 2013.

The delegation was headed by the export staff of the Trade Minister of Indonesia, and was accompanied by Director Trade Defence, Mrs. Pradnyawati, an official from the Indonesian Trade Defence Department said Thursday.

The result of the proceeding at the WTO would be "classified", the official said, and any outcome would be released by the WTO itself.

Indonesia's case was not similar to the Argentinian case, said the official and the delegation was presenting its arguments against the method used by the EU to calculate the normal value of biodiesel.

"There is no scientific basis to impose anti-dumping duties [by the EU]", said Fadhil Hasan, executive director, GAPKI Indonesia, the Indonesian Palm Oil Association, adding that the calculation used to compute the normal price of Indonesian biodiesel was flawed.

Hasan said Indonesia had learned from Argentina's example, because the Argentinians had filed cases against EU anti-dumping duties with the WTO and the European Union General Court.

In March 2016, the WTO ruled in favor of Argentina against the EU anti-dumping duties, and their position was further strengthened in September 2016, when the EU General Court also ruled in their favor.

US DUTY

Meanwhile, as Indonesia seeks to restart biodiesel exports to the EU, it has been hit by another effort to impose anti-dumping duties, this time initiated by the US National Biodiesel Board which filed a petition last Thursday with US trade authorities to impose counter-vailing duties against Indonesian and Argentinian biodiesel exports to the US.

The Trade Defence Ministry official said the Indonesian government had received notification of the petition issued by the NBB, as well as a questionnaire of "injury determination" from the US trade authorities.

Other preliminary information was transmitted to the Indonesian government through the Indonesian trade representative in the US and the Indonesian biodiesel trade body, APROBI, he said.

The Indonesian government can be expected to respond to its US counterpart by early April, the official said, because the response to the US petition involved coordination between different governmental agencies.

The dollar value of Indonesian biodiesel exports to the US in 2016 were almost $1 billion, said Hasan, and, therefore, the government would be keen to defend itself against any potential anti-dumping duties imposed by the US.

Hasan said if anti-dumping duties were imposed, Indonesian biodiesel exports to the US would drop sharply.

"This case is motivated by trade policy to protect domestic US biodiesel, because they cannot compete", Hasan said.


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