WTO authorizes China to slap duties on US imports worth $645m

The World Trade Organization (WTO) authorized China on Wednesday to slap duties on U.S. imports worth $645 million annually as part of a long-running anti-dumping dispute with Washington.

File photo: CGTN

China went to the WTO in 2012 to challenge countervailing duties the United States imposed between 2008 and 2012, mainly during the term of former U.S. President Barack Obama, on 22 Chinese products, including paper, solar panels and steel wire.

China had initially asked the three-person WTO panel to award it the right to impose tariffs on $2.4 billion of U.S. goods but then scaled back to $788.75 million.

The ruling marks the second time the Geneva-based global trade body has allowed China to retaliate against U.S. anti-dumping duties deemed to violate international trade rules.

In November 2019, a WTO arbitrator permitted China to slap duties on up to $3.58 billion worth of U.S. imports in a separate case, after finding fault with the way Washington determined whether Chinese products are being dumped on the U.S. market.

The U.S. still has tariffs on more than $300 billion of Chinese goods imposed by former U.S. President Donald Trump, most of which are still in place.