Sunday, 18 November, 2018

China Abruptly Ends Anti-Dumping Probe Against US Sorghum

Chinese Vice Premier Liu He met with U.S. President Donald Trump to discuss trade issues on May 17 Chinese Vice Premier Liu He met with U.S. President Donald Trump to discuss trade issues on May 17
Rhonda Young | 18 May, 2018, 17:31

HONG KONG-As China-US trade talks resumed in Washington, China said on Friday it is dropping antidumping and anti-subsidy investigations into imported US sorghum, saying it is not in the public interest.

The Chinese Commerce Ministry said Friday the investigation, which started in January, found that imposing anti-dumping duties on U.S. sorghum would increase living costs for Chinese consumers.

Hours earlier, it dropped an anti-dumping probe into US sorghum imports in a conciliatory gesture as top officials meet in Washington.

Chinese Vice Premier Liu He is in Washington this week for talks with U.S. officials led by U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin aimed at heading off a trade war between the world's two biggest economies.

China's vice premier, Liu He, met with President Donald Trump and a US negotiating team led by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Thursday in the first of two days of talks.

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Separate Chinese tariffs on around $3 billion of USA products including fruit, nuts and pork were imposed in March in response to Trump's decision to slap tariffs on iron and steel imports.

The ministry now says that such a measure would particularly hit Chinese livestock breeders struggling to make ends meet as domestic pork prices fall.

"China has taught a lesson to the United States and showed how it can hurt US exports", said Ole Houe, director of advisory services at brokerage Chinese Vice Premier Liu Hein Sydney. "The next USA sorghum crop will be harvested in August", he told the news agency Reuters.

"Now they are showing goodwill by halting its anti-dumping investigation into sorghum imports, but it is a cheap way of showing goodwill as the USA does not have much sorghum left to export".

Corn, soybean and soymeal futures fell on the news as worries over feedmakers having to find alternative ingredients eased.

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The announcement on sorghum imports came from the Commerce Ministry in Beijing on Friday morning, and was not explicitly linked to the trade talks. The news brought some unexpected relief to Chinese buyers who still had cargoes stuck at ports.

China imported $956 million of sorghum from the United States previous year, according to the Commerce Ministry.

"Now they are showing goodwill by halting its anti-dumping investigation into sorghum imports, but it is a cheap way of showing goodwill as the USA doesn't have much sorghum left to export". Beijing still threatens to slap aggressive 25 percent tariffs on a swathe of US farm goods, including sorghum and soybeans.

"The United States officials and the Chinese delegation also participated in a meeting with President Donald J Trump at the White House".

For many, the damage has already been done.

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