China did indeed break global trade rules when it imposed anti-dumping duties on U.S. electrical steel imports, the World Trade Organization ruled Thursday, confirming on appeal a previous ruling.
The WTO's dispute panel had already ruled on June 15 that China breached trade rules by not providing sufficient evidence for imposing the duties and for conducting a flawed analysis, but that decision was appealed by Beijing five days later.
The WTO's appellate body on Thursday rejected China's arguments, ruling that the dispute panel "did not improperly disregard the parallel price trends of subject imports and domestic products."
Neither had it disregarded "the role that the increase in the volume of subject imports played in [China's commerce ministry's] price effects finding," it said.
Instead, the appellate body "upheld the panel's finding that China acted inconsistently" with anti-dumping rules.
The dispute dates back to September 2010 when Washington accused China of breaching trade rules by not providing sufficient evidence that anti-dumping duties were needed on U.S. imports of electrical steel used in the power sector.
The WTO dispute panel had found that "the manner in which [China] applied facts available was inconsistent" with trade rules.
Thursday's ruling means China will now be obliged to carry out the panel's recommendations and ensure that its legislation is in line with WTO rules.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2012