Brussels, 23 January 2017 - On Monday 23 January a technical briefing for MEPs on ‘EU-CHINA TRADE RELATIONS AND POSSIBLE CHANGES TO THE EU ANTI-DUMPING RULES?‘ has been organised by AEGIS Europe at the European Parliament. The briefing has been co-hosted by MEPs Mosca (S&D, IT), Lambsdorff (ALDE, DE), and Proust (EPP, FR).
The event has been attended by 60-70 people, and more than 50 were from EU institutions (mostly MEP assistants, but also 7 MEPs, several people from DG Trade, someone from the Council Legal Service, and the Maltese Presidency).
The speaker list included:
- Leopoldo Rubinacci (Director of the Trade Defence Directorate in DG Trade), who presented the key points of the EC proposal on the reform of AD and AS Regulations,
- Inès Van Lierde (SG of Euroalliages and Chair of AEGIS Europe), who presented AEGIS Europe views on the Commission proposal,
- Bernard O’Connor (NCTM Brussels), who presented some strategic considerations linked to the China MES issue,
- and Laurent Ruessmann (Fieldfisher Brussels), who explained the legal aspects of the proposal and the importance of ensuring the continued use of a "non-standard" methodology for imports from China.
You can find attached Ms Van Lierde - AEGIS Europe Chair - power point presentation.
A Q&A with MEPs followed the presentations.
- Edouard Martin (S&D, FR) voiced his outspoken criticisms to the EC proposal: the new methodology proposed by the EC is not good for EU producers, because it is a de facto granting of MES to China.
He highlighted that it is thanks to the action of the EP ‘China MEPs Action Group’, and thanks to the EP Resolution on China MES (12 May 2016) that the automatic granting of MES to China has been avoided. Moreover, he underlined the EC should sanction the lack of cooperation of Chinese producers in providing data.
- Inmaculada Rodríguez-Piñero Fernández (S&D, ES) asked to the EC to what extent their proposal had taken into account the EP Resolution of 12 May 2016, and she raised the question of the possible deviation of Chinese exports to the EU, in case President Trump goes towards protectionism.
- Franck Proust (EPP, FR) highlighted the necessity to have enough resources (financial and human) in DG Trade to properly apply the new legislation. He proposed to move people working on TTIP to trade defence. He underlined that the ‘significant distortion’ concept should be defined, and he asked for the introduction of a ‘sanction’ system in case of non-cooperation, as well.
- Victor Boştinaru (S&D, RO) said that the global wave of populism and protectionism (see US) put at risk EU influence on the shaping of international trade rules. The EU could be isolated.
- Alessia Mosca (S&D, IT) also made some considerations:
(i) the EP is asking for fair trade and fair competition;
(ii) the WTO decision will influence our system;
(iii) with its 12 May 2016 resolution the EP asked to have a debate on the MES China issue, and said that the granting of MES was not automatic. Transparency from the EC is needed;
(iv) there is concern about the ambiguity of the proposal. Is it in line with WTO obligations? What about the country report? What about grandfathering measures?
(v) The EC should take into account juridical obligations, but also the real economy.