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April 10, 2018
China initiates WTO complaint against U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum
China has requested World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute consultations with the United States concerning certain U.S. duties imposed on imports of steel and aluminum products.
American President Donald Trump issued Presidential Proclamations announcing the imposition of duties on imports of steel and aluminum from every country except Canada, Mexico, Australia, Argentina, South Korea, Brazil and member countries of the European Union, which are exempted until May 1, 2018.
China claims the duties of 25% and 10% on imports of steel and aluminum products respectively are inconsistent with provisions of the WTO's General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 1994 and of the Agreement on Safeguards.
The duties have been adopted through a number of legal instruments, including pursuant to Section 232 of the U.S. Trade Expansion Act.
A request for consultations formally initiates a dispute in the WTO. Consultations give the parties an opportunity to discuss the matter and to find a satisfactory solution without proceeding further with litigation.
After 60 days, if China and the United States are not able to reach a mutually agreed solution through consultations, China may request that the WTO establish a dispute settlement panel to examine the matter.
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