Washington: The US has imposed a preliminary anti-dumping duty on import of certain types of steel pipes from India, about a month after New Delhi lodged a complaint with WTO against the US for imposing anti-subsidy duties on import of certain Indian steel products.

The US Department of Commerce said it has "preliminarily determined" that Indian firms were selling the pipes --circular welded carbon-quality steel pipe -- in the US at  48.43 per cent below the fair market value of the product.

"Commerce preliminarily determined that producers/ exporters from India ... sold certain steel pipe in the United States at dumping margins, or margin ranges, of 48.43 percent" it said.

In the India investigation, the Department said, the mandatory respondent Zenith Birla (India) (previously known as Zenith Steel Pipes and Industries) received a preliminary dumping margin of 48.43 per cent.

"There is an existing anti-dumping (AD) order on certain steel pipe from India. Therefore, this investigation covers only merchandise manufactured and/or exported by Zenith
Birla," it said.

The pipe is generally known as standard pipe, fence pipe and tube, sprinkler pipe, and structural pipe.

In 2011, the US imports of pipes from India were estimated at USD 64.6 million.

As a result of the preliminary affirmative determinations, the Department "will instruct" US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to require a cash deposit or bond based on these preliminary rates from importers.

Last month, India had requested consultations with Washington under the World Trade Organisation (WTO) dispute settlement system concerning the latter's countervailing duties on certain steel products from India.

In March, the US had imposed preliminary countervailing duties of about 286 per cent on certain steel pipe from India.

The request for consultations formally initiates a dispute in the WTO to offset government subsidies.

For the purposes of AD investigations, dumping occurs when a foreign company sells a product in the US at less than fair value, the Department said. The final determination of the duty is expected later this year.

(Agencies)

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