Vietnamese steel producers, represented by the Vietnam Steel Association (VSA), are discussing whether or not to sue Chinese enterprises for dumping their products in Vietnam.
China-made ingot steel and rolled steel are being offered at VND7,350,000/tonne ($459.37) in Vietnam, a level that, according to VSA, is far below the production costs.
VSA members are seeking advice from the Competition Administration Department (CAD) under the Ministry of Trade about whether to file an anti-dumping lawsuit against Chinese producers.
The department is proceeding slowly in the matter, saying that it needs more time to consider the case from every angle carefully with reference to Vietnamese laws and international practice.
The department said that it was the legitimate right of Vietnamese steel producers to protect their interests against unfair trade behaviours, which come in line with Vietnamese and international laws.
However, in order to take legal action, VSA and its members should have a thorough understanding of the policies and procedures stipulated by Vietnamese laws on taking legal action against products imported to Vietnam.
According to current laws, the institutions and individuals that initiate legal proceedings must represent the local industry. The representative must meet two requirements:
- The quantity or value of the products they make must account for at least 25% of the total output or value of locally made products
- The quantity or value of the products made by the local producers who advocate anti-dumping measures on the imported products must be bigger than the quantity or value of the products made by the local producers who protest the anti-dumping measures.
Department officials also reminded the plaintiffs that they needed to determine if the questioned imports amounted to more than 3% of the total imports of this kind of product into Vietnam, and if they cause serious threat to local production.
The department said that the state investigation agency still needed to take necessary investigation steps, collect information and calculate selling prices before making a final conclusion on whether the rolled steel was dumped in Vietnam.
CAD is ready to give advice to the VSA on the necessary steps in legal proceedings. The department late last week met VSA members and gave initial instructions on how to collect information and documents to facilitate legal proceedings.