The steel industry avoids trade defense

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The steel industry avoids trade defense

At present, fraud of goods origin to benefit is no longer a new problem for the steel industry as well as many other industries. This not only makes domestic steel enterprises lose their competitiveness in the international arena but also can affect the image of the whole steel industry.

Many experts and businesses say that there is no other way to further strengthen the verification of goods origin and improve the role of state management in combating fraud.

Export difficult

According to information from the Vietnam Steel Association, the steel industry is one of the sectors facing lawsuits against tax evasion and dumping ... In recent months, there have been many investigative cases. and preliminary conclusions on Vietnamese steel products evading taxes and dumping.

For example, the US Department of Commerce announced a preliminary decision confirming that corrosion-resistant and cold-rolled carbon steel imported from Vietnam evaded anti-dumping and countervailing duties from South Korea and Taiwan (China). ) or the Vietnam Steel Association and the Department of Trade Defense (Ministry of Industry and Trade) warn of the risks that the Canadian market may apply measures to avoid tax evasion of Vietnamese steel ...

Mr. Nghiem Xuan Da, Chairman of Vietnam Steel Association, said that Vietnam's steel products exported to foreign countries were subject to trade remedies such as anti-dumping, trade safeguard and anti-subsidy measures. levels, anti-tax evasion ... makes the export market at risk of many difficulties.

Data from the Steel Association showed that production of finished steel products in August 2019 was just over 2 million tons, down 1.15% compared to the previous month; sales volume reached 1.8 million tons, down 10.34% over the previous month and down 4.4% from the same period last year. In particular, steel exports reached only more than 355,000 tons, down 2.74% compared to July 2019 and down 9.3% compared to the same period in 2018.

The Vietnam Chamber of Commerce said that cases of anti-trade investigation cases against Vietnam's exports are on the rise. Products under investigation are mainly items such as: iron and steel, fiber, household appliances, electronics ... In addition, domestic steel brands have been counterfeited and counterfeited.

For example, recently, the Hanoi City Police decided to prosecute a criminal case for the production and sale of fake steel pipe products "knockoffs" of Hoa Phat Group. This is just one of many cases of trademark infringement and counterfeiting of goods detected and handled by the authorities.

According to a representative of Hoa Phat Group, the situation of counterfeiting in the country is not as worrying as the fraud of businesses about the origin of goods and the fraud of the codes to benefit. This not only affects competitiveness but also worsens the image of Vietnamese steel and is easily put into the "sights" of trade defense of other countries.

Mr. Nguyen Van Sua, steel industry expert said that many lawsuits against the domestic steel industry in recent years stemmed from the fact that foreign products transferred products to Vietnam to process to get origin from Vietnam.

This trade fraud greatly affects Vietnamese goods when exported to markets, narrowing the Vietnamese market. Meanwhile, foreign frauds have benefited from a lack of transparency, causing many businesses to do business with true credibility in the market. In particular, with the trick of tax evasion, many steel products imported into Vietnam are very cheap compared to domestic products and at this time, it is necessary to coordinate between related ministries and branches.

Sharing his views, Dr. Pham Sy Thanh, Institute of Economic and Policy Research, said that it would be a disaster if foreign goods "borrowed" Vietnamese marks, then exported them to other markets. This will have a negative long-term impact on the whole industry.

How to combat fraud?

In order to effectively deal with and handle violations of evasive acts and frauds of origin of goods, the Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh has just directed the Department of Trade Defense to set up the Standing Group of the project "Increase strengthening state management on evading trade remedies and origin frauds "and soon finalizing action plans, coordinating with relevant ministries and agencies in implementing them. In the immediate future, focus on commodity groups with high risk of fraud, such as wood, textiles, footwear, seafood, steel, aluminum ...

The Minister also asked C / O issuers (certificates of origin), customs authorities to tighten the issuance of C / O, strengthen inspection for businesses with sudden increase in exports. The Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry shall coordinate with the concerned units to work with associations and industries at risk of evasive investigation and fraud of origin; review and propose strengthening inspection and management of activities of transshipment, temporary import for re-export ... This is a necessary move to improve the control of goods origin and combat fraud.

Mr. Nguyen Van Sua said that the authorities need to have policies to protect the domestic market, protect the "home ground", and restrict the import of domestically produced products. In particular, promote the use of trade defense tools, prevent poor quality goods, dumping in the Vietnamese market to protect businesses.

However, the core of the problem lies in the businesses. Industry is under pressure from trade remedies, so the initiative in domestic raw material supply plays an important role. Currently, Vietnam has produced raw materials (hot rolled coils) to produce sheets and corrugated sheets. This helps businesses avoid initiating lawsuits, imposing tax avoidance from large markets, typically the United States or other markets.

In fact, in many cases involving trade remedies, Hoa Phat Steel is a good prevention unit thanks to its active coordination and proof of origin and competitiveness. Hoa Phat Steel Group actively coordinated with the investigating authority in responding and providing all required information and documents, criticizing the plaintiff's arguments ...

Therefore, the Group is not subject to taxes when exporting to the EU or the Australian side claims that Hoa Phat Steel does not dump rolled steel to this market as clear evidences when businesses actively cooperate to solve the problem.

In addition to coordinating in lawsuits, representatives of Hoa Phat Dung Quat Steel Company said that applying technology in production to improve product quality, clarity of origin is also a decisive factor. development of the business. With Dung Quat Iron and Steel Complex, Hoa Phat will own a closed production value chain from hot rolled steel ore production to corrugated iron products and distribution. Thereby, helping to improve competitiveness and minimize "sticking" to evade taxes, anti-dumping from export markets.

Advising member enterprises, Mr. Nghiem Xuan Da, Chairman of Vietnam Steel Association, said that enterprises must work together and provide information to the Association to avoid hot export growth to other countries. New markets such as Canada, Mexico. Because, when the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) comes into effect, this will reduce the losses when countries initiate an investigation to apply trade remedies for Vietnam's exported steel products.

In addition, the authorities need to strengthen protection of domestic production by technical barriers, trade with effective trade defense tools. In particular, preventing the transfer of foreign investment into Vietnam with inappropriate technologies, consuming a lot of energy, causing environmental pollution such as steel induction electric furnaces ...

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