Ceramic tile imports found to cause material injury to Taiwan industry

09/14/2021 07:33 PM
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Pixabay photo for illustrative purpose only
Pixabay photo for illustrative purpose only

Taipei, Sept. 14 (CNA) Ceramic tile suppliers from India, Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia have been found to cause material injury to Taiwan's industry by selling their products at unfair low prices, according to the International Trade Commission (ITC) under the Ministry of Economic Affairs.

The ITC issued its final affirmative determination Monday, saying the dumping practices conducted by ceramic tile makers from the four Asian countries resulted in material damage to their Taiwanese counterparts, causing local suppliers to lose market share.

According to the ITC, the four countries saw their combined ceramic tile market share in Taiwan rise from 25.9 percent in 2016 to 38.2 percent in the first quarter of this year, because they sold their products at less than normal value.

Meanwhile, local ceramic tile makers suffered a decline in market share each year, from 58 percent in 2016 to 44.3 percent in the first quarter of this year, the ITC said.

Furthermore, the ITC said, shipments from the four countries in the first quarter of this year soared 61.3 percent from a year earlier as they keep cutting the prices of their products in Taiwan's market.

From January-March, suppliers from the four countries accounted for 60-70 percent of Taiwan's total ceramic tile imports, the ITC added.

As ceramic tile exporters from the four countries cut their prices by 12 percent, 6.1 percent, and 3.4 percent, respectively, in 2017, 2018 and 2019, their sales rose more than 8 percent from 2018-2019, the ITC said.

In the wake of a falling market share, Taiwanese ceramic tile makers saw their production capacity utilization hurt significantly, inventories grew sharply and their return on investment dropped to only 1 percent, the ITC added.

Citing the figures as evidence, the ITC concluded that ceramic tile imports from the four countries did have an adverse material impact on the Taiwanese industry.

The ITC said it will forward the final affirmative determination to the Ministry of Finance (MOF), which will decide how to impose anti-dumping tariffs on ceramic tile exporters from the four countries.

The MOF is expected to come up with a decision on financial penalties by the end of September, the agency said.

In July, the MOF issued a final affirmative ruling, determining that ceramic tile suppliers from the four countries dumped their products in Taiwan.

The anti-dumping investigation was initiated by the MOF and the ITC in October 2020 after the Taiwan Ceramic Industries Association, Champion Building Materials Co., Snayo Tile Group, and Hiland Co. filed a petition requiring an investigation into alleged unfair trading practices from the four countries.

(By Liang Pei-chi and Frances Huang)

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