China will cut export tariffs on some steel, fertilizer products, says Ministry of Finance

By Reuters – Global Times Source:Xinhua-Global Times Published: 2017/12/17 22:03:40

China will cut export taxes on some steel products and fertilizers and ditch those for sales abroad of steel wire, rods and bars from January 1, the Ministry of Finance said, in a series of measures that could boost shipments,

The move is likely to stir concerns among foreign competitors in the US and Europe that China, the world's top steel producer, may be looking to sell its excess products abroad, media reports said over the weekend.

It follows a ministerial level G20 meeting in Berlin last month, at which China and the US remained at odds over how to tackle excess steel capacity.

The global steel sector is worth about $900 billion a year.

Stainless steel plate export tariffs will fall to 5 percent from 10 percent, while billet tariffs will be 10 percent, down from 15 percent currently.

The world's second-largest economy exported 64.5 million tons of steel products in the first 10 months of the year, down 30 percent from a year earlier.

That included 1.74 million tons of steel wire, down 9.5 percent from a year before.

China has also cut some 100 million tons of legal capacity and another 120 million tons of illegal capacity since January 2016, and rejects US claims that it needs to do more.

The 2015 global steel sector crisis was blamed on record levels of unfairly traded Chinese steel, but prices have since recovered some 50 percent thanks to China's capacity cuts and infrastructure spending.

Export taxes on three fertilizer compounds - nitrogen, phosphorous and potash - will be lowered to 100 yuan ($15.14) per ton, compared with the current rate of 20 percent of the total shipment value, the ministry said.


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