China Hits U.S. Sorghum Trade with Fresh Duty
Imports will incur a 178.6% duty says China’s Ministry of Commerce
China will impose temporary anti-dumping deposits on U.S. sorghum imports from Wednesday, adding to trade tensions between the world’s biggest economies according to a report from Bloomberg. Soybean meal futures climbed on concerns the oilseed could be targeted next.
Imports will incur a 178.6% duty, China’s Ministry of Commerce said in a preliminary ruling on Tuesday. That’s in compliance with domestic law and World Trade Organization rules, Wang Hejun, chief of the trade remedy and investigation bureau at the ministry, said in a statement.
China began a probe into sorghum imports from the U.S. in early February, just weeks after President Donald Trump slapped tariffs on imported solar panels and washing machines.
Tensions between the countries have since escalated after Trump ordered levies on steel and aluminum, with plans for more on products from China. The Asian nation, the largest buyer of American sorghum, has responded with tariffs of its own and potentially more to come.
“The rate is quite high and some buyers may have to cancel shipments,” said Li Qiang, chief analyst with Shanghai JC Intelligence Co. A rally in domestic corn prices since late last year has prompted domestic feed mills to increase purchases of the grain from the U.S., he said.
China imported about 4.8 million metric tons of sorghum from the U.S. last year, worth about $957 million, according to customs data. Purchases in the first two months of 2018 were 11% lower than a year earlier.