The commerce ministry has recommended imposition of countervailing duty (CVD) on fibreboard imported from five countries, including Vietnam, Malaysia and Thailand, for five years to guard domestic players from subsidised inbound shipments, according to a notification. Fiberboard is a type of engineered wood product that is made out of wood fibres. It is used in building and construction, furniture, industrial, and handicrafts purposes.
Following a complaint by domestic manufacturers, the ministry’s investigation arm Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR) conducted a probe and has recommended the duty on fibreboards exported to India from Indonesia, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam at subsidised prices. “The authority recommends imposition of definitive countervailing duty equal to the lesser of margin of subsidy and margin of injury for a period of five years…so as to remove the injury to the domestic industry,” the DGTR has said in a notification. The finance ministry takes the final decision to impose the duty.
The recommended duty is in the range of 8.29 per cent to 27.52 per cent on the CIF (cost, insurance, freight) value of the product. In its final findings, the DGTR has concluded that the Domestic Industry has suffered material injury and the imports have increased significantly in absolute terms. “The imports are undercutting the prices of the domestic industry and have had a suppressing and depressing effect on the prices of the domestic industry…The domestic industry has suffered injury due to subsidisation of the subject goods,” it added.
Greenply Industries Ltd/ Greenpanel Industries Ltd, Century Plyboards (India) Ltd. and Rushil Decor Ltd have filed the application for imposition of the duty on the imports. Under the global trade rules of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), a member country is allowed to impose anti-subsidy to countervailing duty if a product is subsidised by the government of its trading partner.
These duties are trade remedies to protect domestic industry. Subsidy on a product makes it competitive in price terms in other markets. Countries provide this to boost their exports.