Representatives of the EU27 Member States provisionally voted last week on the European Commission proposal for definitive anti-dumping duties on glass fibre originating in China. The Commission proposes definitive import duties of 13.8% and excludes yarns from the proceedings.

The Commission proposal was initially released for consultation in December 2010. It followed the Commission Regulation 812/2010 imposing provisional import duties of 43.6% for a period of 6 months from 17 September 2010.

EuCIA welcomes a reduction of duties from 43.6% to 13.8%, but believes this level will still be harmful for the European industry. It says a high number of major European users of glass fibre and associations have expressed their concerns with regard to the investigation and have questioned the provisional tariffs and the whole investigation.

According to EuCIA, the outcome of the provisional vote last week confirmed the opinions and concerns of the European industry. A high number of Member States representatives abstained while only 4 Member States out of 27 voted in favour of imposing definitive import duties of 13.8%.

 “It is surprising to see how the EU Executive body can pass its proposal through the Member States when only 4 countries support the duties in a Europe of 27 member States.Commenting on the vote," notes Alexandre Dangis, Managing Director EuPC (European Plastics Converters association). "The impact of this case on many SMEs has clearly been underestimated and not understood properly by the large number of EU Member States that abstained. I call on these Member State, the EU Commission and the Council of Ministers to review the proposal once again and terminate the investigation without any anti-dumping measures. Time is also ripe to review the anti-dumping legal proceedings and the efficiency of the Trade Defence Instruments (TDI) to ensure that sectors with large SMEs are properly heard and defended when cases are affecting them."

“So far, we are satisfied with the results and everything possible was done to achieve the best outcome," adds Volker Fritz, EuCIA's president. "The high reduction of duties from the initial phase and the low number of countries who supported this case showed that EuCIA was listened to during our meetings and is becoming more and more influential with the EU legislators."

Following the provisional consultation that took place last week, the European Commission will now formally communicate the proposal for definitive measures for consultation and voting in the Council of the European Union. A final vote is expected next month. If voted in favour, the definitive measures are expected to be published in the Official Journal of the European Union on the 16 March 2011.