Saudi pressure fails to work

By Malini Hariharan

The polypropylene (PP) anti-dumping investigation that Indian producers had initiated against exporters from Saudi Arabia, Singapore and Oman has finally drawn to a close.

The Finance Ministry confirmed anti-dumping duties (ADD) late yesterday, just a day before a recommendation made by the Commerce Ministry in August was due to expire.

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The duties range from $28.49-323.50/tonne (lower than the provisional tariffs announced in July last year) and would be levied for 5 years.

Among the producers affected by the ADD are Singapore-based ExxonMobil Chemical Asia Pacific, Sabic Saudi Yanbu Petrochemical Company and Saudi Polyolefins Company.

For the Saudis, the duties are a major cause for concern as India’s commerce ministry has ruled that the Saudi formula for pricing propane, feedstock for PP, gives them an ‘unfair advantage’ over other international producers.

As reported by the blog earlier, Saudi producers risked more dumping and other duties from countries around the world if India’s ruling sets a legal precedent.

The Saudis had put up a strong defense and this was probably why the Finance Ministry took such a long time to confirm the duties.

But the story is unlikely to end here, especially as the Saudis have warned that they will take the case to the WTO if ADD is levied.

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