`Trade Dispute with China Could Impact Europe's Olive Oil Exports - Olive Oil Times

Trade Dispute with China Could Impact Europe's Olive Oil Exports

Jun. 6, 2013
Julie Butler

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The world’s biggest olive oil exporter to China — Spain — fears being caught in the cross­fire if a trade bat­tle breaks out over the European Union’s puni­tive tar­iffs on Chinese solar pan­els announced Tuesday.

China waited just a day to launch an anti-dump­ing probe into E.U. wine imports, a move which sug­gests a tit-for-tat trade war looms, the South China Morning Post reports.

And the European Voice says rumors sug­gest Beijing may also tar­get olive oil, steel tub­ing, and part of the chem­i­cals indus­try.”


Similarly, ARN Digital says exporters fear Spanish olive oil could suf­fer some of the worst col­lat­eral dam­age because if China and the E.U. don’t reach a deal to resolve their dis­pute in the next two months, China will impose bar­ri­ers not just on wine but also on olive oil.”

The coun­try sup­plies nearly 60 per­cent of China’s olive oil imports and in the first quar­ter of this year its olive oil exports there enjoyed 80 per­cent growth year-on-year, to reach €35 mil­lion, ARN Digital said.

Two-month win­dow to seek solu­tion on pan­els

E.U. Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht announced on Tuesday that the European Commission had decided to impose pro­vi­sional tar­iffs on solar pan­els imported from China in order to counter the dump­ing of these prod­ucts on the European mar­ket.”

A pro­vi­sional 11.8 per­cent tar­iff now applies on all Chinese solar panel imports but this is to rise to an aver­age of 47.6 per­cent from August 6. However, De Gucht said he would pre­fer a nego­ti­ated solu­tion, and quickly.”

China’s Ministry of Commerce announced the wine probe in a state­ment the fol­low­ing day which also called for the EU to show more sin­cer­ity and flex­i­bil­ity” on the solar dis­pute.

We have noted the quick rise in wine imports from the EU in recent years, and we will han­dle the inves­ti­ga­tion in accor­dance with the law,” the min­istry state­ment said, accord­ing to South China Morning Post.

E.U. itself the tar­get of anti-dump­ing moves

The E.U. has itself already been sub­ject to var­i­ous dump­ing claims over sub­si­dies for olive oil production.As reported in Olive Oil Times in April, South Africa is the lat­est coun­try to seek a coun­ter­vail­ing duty to apply on E.U. olive oil imports.

Peru had applied such an anti-sub­sidy duty on imports of Italian and Spanish olive oil until a tri­bunal there quashed the duty ear­lier this year on find­ing there had not been proof of injury to the olive oil sec­tor in Peru.

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