Ahmedabad: A nationwide racket allegedly involved in evading anti-dumping duty of over Rs 20 crore on steel coils, imported mostly from a major Korean steel maker, has been unearthed by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence.
    
A consignment of steel coils valued at over Rs 8.5 crore imported by POSCO India Delhi Processing Centre Pvt Ltd from Korea was recently seized by the Ahmedabad DRI unit at the Kandla port in Gujarat for duty evasion, a top official said.
    
"An import consignment of POSCO India worth over Rs 8.5 crore was recently seized at Kandla port for mis-declaration of width of the steel coils to evade anti-dumping duty," Additional Director of DRI R K Singh said.
    
On being contacted, Director of POSCO India Orissa Project, Y K Kim, said over phone that "it is wrong information. We have never imported steel coils. It might be some subsidiary of POSCO in India, importing coils."
    
There was no response from the steel maker's subsidiary, POSCO India Delhi Processing Centre Pvt Ltd, on the development.
   
Steel coils which find usage largely in automotive industry were imported from Posco, Korea.     

"Our investigations have revealed that anti-dumping duty evasion on imports of steel coils in India from Korea could go beyond Rs 20 crore as violation of a GoI notification has been found in imports done by another subsidiary of Posco and Sharda Motors at Chennai Port also, besides few other importers," the DRI official said.
    
Customs officials at various ports across the country have been alerted about the modus operandi involving concealing the width of steel coils to evade anti-dumping duty, another DRI official said.
   
Imported stainless steel coils with width ranging between 600 mm to 1250 mm attract anti-dumping duty as per a Government of India (GoI) notification-14/2010 issued on February, 2010, the official said, adding the notification was passed to protect the interest of domestic steel industry.
   
"However, POSCO India Delhi Processing Centre had declared width of steel coils imported from Korea as 1251 mm to evade duty," he said.
   
The official also claimed that "POSCO India has admitted that they have evaded anti-dumping duty and also agreed to pay around Rs one crore duty on it so far. Four days ago their officials visited DRI office here to get their statements recorded".

Agencies