EU members have backed the imposition of anti-dumping duties on imports of cold-rolled flat stainless steel from China and Taiwan, according to sources familiar with the decision.
The European Union will charge tariffs of between 24.3 and 25.3 percent for sheet, coil and strip imports from China and of 6.8 percent for Taiwanese product, following a complaint lodged in May 2014 by the European steel producers association Eurofer.
The European Commission launched its investigation in June 2014, determining that the provisional duties should apply in March.
Those provisional duties are of 24.2-25.2 percent for China and of between 10.9 and 12.0 percent for Taiwan.
Definitive measures, which are typically in place for five years, were put to a vote by the EU's 28 member states last week, with a sizeable majority supporting them. The Commission has until Sept. 25. to impose them.
Eurofer has said China and Taiwan shipped 620 million euros ($686 million) of cold-rolled stainless steel into the EU in 2013, some 17 percent of the overall market, and were guilty of dumping, or selling at unfairly low prices.
Imports from the two countries more than tripled from 2010 to 2014, Eurofer said, because of overcapacity there rather than market growth in Europe.
Analysts have said the tariffs would probably not end imports from China, but were high enough to have a considerable impact.
The companies affected include China's Shanxi Taigang Stainless Steel Co, Baosteel Stainless Steel Co and Taiwanese manufacturers Tang Eng Iron Works Co, Yieh United Steel Corp (Yusco).
The main European stainless steel makers are Acerinox , Aperam, Outokumpu.
Eurofer last week also withdrew a parallel complaint into alleged illegal subsidies for Chinese producers. It said this was because there was no possibility of further tariffs being imposed given that proposed dumping duties were at the maximum levels possible.