A WTO panel ruled that Chinese duties on imports of electrical steel from the US violate the organization’s rules, possibly marking a precedent for other WTO cases involving countervailing duties set by China, The Wall Street Journal reported. Beijing imposed countervailing tariffs and anti-dumping duties after it investigated allegedly unfair subsidies for electrical steel production in the US. While the WTO panel did not concur with all American claims, it found that the duty rates were not supported by facts. Beijing now has 60 days to appeal the decision. The case could serve as a “precedent to China’s abusive use of trade-remedy measures,” said Tim Reif, general counsel for the US Trade Representative. Separately, Reif said Friday that the US would consider a WTO case or Commerce Department investigation into Chinese auto imports after allegations from policymakers that Beijing illegally subsidizes its producers.
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