China's commerce ministry today accused the US of employing "unfair methods" during an anti-dumping investigation into Chinese cold-rolled steel products and asked the US to rectify it.
The US said yesterday it would impose duties of over 500 per cent on Chinese cold-rolled flat steel, which is used widely in car body panels, appliances and construction.
Expressing "strong dissatisfaction" with the ruling, China said the US was trying to protect its steel companies by transferring its industry woes to the world.
"The United States adopted many unfair methods during the anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigation into Chinese products, including the refusal to grant Chinese state-owned firms a differentiated tax rate," the ministry said in a statement posted to its website.
"China urges the United States to strictly obey World Trade Organisation rules and rectify its mistaken methods as soon as possible," it added.
China had consistently denied dumping products on foreign markets, claiming its steelmakers were more efficient and enjoyed far lower costs than their international counterparts.
China had also denied any inducements had been used to encourage steelmakers to sell their products overseas, and claimed trade flows were determined by the market.
Meanwhile, the Chinese commerce ministry complained that the duties of 522 per cent announced on cold-rolled steel used in cars and other manufacturing were excessive and called on Washington to scrap them.
The latest US duties included 266 per cent for anti-dumping and 256 per cent to offset what according to investigators were improper subsidies.
The US action comes on a 2015 complaint by five steel producers that said they had been forced to lay off thousands of employees due to unfair foreign competition.
Meanwhile, the EU has initiated investigation into Chinese steel exports after protests by steelworkers.