China files shrimp dispute against US at WTO

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China has taken the United States to the World Trade Organization over a controversial anti-dumping calculation imposed by Washington against Chinese frozen shrimp, the trade body said Tuesday.

"On 28 February, China requested consultations with the United States under the dispute settlement system concerning the latter's anti-dumping measures on certain frozen warmwater shrimp from China," said the WTO on its website.

The Chinese commerce ministry said in a statement that in 2004, the United States decided to apply a complex anti-dumping calculation called zeroing on Chinese shrimps.

Chinese exporters brought their case to US courts, but lost a final appeal in 2010.

"In this case, the United States implemented the zeroing method, which breaches world trade rules... damaging the rights of the Chinese warmwater shrimp industry," said the ministry.

It added that Beijing has sought to negotiate a solution with Washington, but the United States failed to address China's concerns.

The United States has lost several disputes at the WTO over the zeroing method, and Washington proposed in December to end the anti-dumping measure in upcoming reviews.

"The United States is deeply disappointed in China's decision to request consultations," said Nefeterius McPherson, spokeswoman for the US Trade Representative.

She noted that despite Washington's proposal to end zeroing, China has "determined to pursue consultations even as the United States is in the midst of its domestic legal and administrative compliance process, including consultations with Congress."

"The decision now by China to pursue new claims against the United States on zeroing only complicates resolution of this issue," she added.

© 2011 AFP

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