Many thanks to all those members who participated in the TTA survey early in 2017, which sought to gauge views on the continuation of import tariffs against Chinese manufacturers of ceramic wall and floor tiles. A sizeable majority of respondents were in favour of the tariffs continuing and also believed that the level of tariff was about right. Only a minority, however, were in favour of extending the tariffs to natural stone wall and floor tiles.
The European Commission has now decided to extend the duties levied on Chinese ceramic tile imports for a further five years to November 2022. The tariff will be at the same level as previously since 2011 (ranging between 30.6% and 69.7% depending on whether the Chinese exporters cooperated with the investigations or not.)
The review has taken more than a year and found in favour of the European ceramics industry represented by the European Ceramic Tile Manufacturers’ Federation CET. There was a focus on the continued practice of dumping by Chinese exporters, as well as the level of China’s overcapacity, equivalent to four times the EU’s entire tile output.
In view of Brexit, the UK will now have an option of whether to follow the EU tariff, or to set its own in individual discussions with China. So the industry needs good transitional arrangements in place during the process of exiting the EU, to ensure that the interests of the few remaining UK manufacturers are protected as far as possible.
[Photo from China Daily]