US workers urge measures against Chinese coated paper imports

After having persuaded President Barack Obama to restrict tyre imports from China, the United Steelworkers Union filed a fresh case calling for imposition of duties on coated paper from both China and Indonesia.

The steelworkers union representing workers from a number of industries sees itself at the receiving end of unfair foreign trade practices that have taken a toll of millions of US manufacturing jobs.

Workers from paper manufacturers NewPage Corp of Miamisburg, Ohio, Appleton Coated LLC of Kimberly, Wisconsin and Sappi Fine Paper North America of Boston, Massachusetts, who feel they have similar grievances, have teamed up with the steelworkers union. The companies represent about 6,000 union workers at paper mills in nine states.

President of the union, Leo Gerard said in a statement, "Neither the companies nor the union will tolerate being obliterated without asking our government to investigate and enforce the rules of fair trade".

According to the petitioner's estimates the imports of coated paper rose 40 per cent in the first six months of 2009, compared with the same period in 2008 and Chinese and Indonesian imports supply around 30 per cent of the US market.

The product finds application in high-quality writing, printing etc. The cases against China and Indonesia will take about a year to complete with a preliminary determination by mid-November by the US International Trade Commission, a US federal agency.