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US slaps Korean wind towers with 5.41% anti-dumping tariff

President Moon Jae-in gives a speech at a wind farm in Buan, North Jeolla Province, on July 17. (Yonhap)
President Moon Jae-in gives a speech at a wind farm in Buan, North Jeolla Province, on July 17. (Yonhap)

The US International Trade Commission has greenlighted a 5.41 percent anti-dumping tariff on wind towers imported from South Korea, citing that the local industry there has been “materially injured.”

According to the Korea International Trade Association on Tuesday, the ITC made a final ruling Thursday to issue the tariff on the imports of utility-scale wind towers from Korea, saying the products are sold at “less than fair value” in the US market.

Wind towers are structures or posts that support the nacelle and rotor blades of a wind turbine.

The tariff is lower than the dumping rate of 5.98 percent preliminarily determined by the US Department of Commerce in February.

Following the final ITC ruling, the US Commerce Department is expected to issue countervailing anti-dumping duty orders on Korean wind towers within seven days.

At the final ruling, the US Commerce Department said that imports of wind towers from Korea spiked during its investigation into the products and therefore “critical circumstances” exist for them. It argued that the 5.41 percent tariff should apply to all wind towers that had been imported from Korea 90 days before Feb. 5 -- the date of which it preliminarily determined a dumping rate of 5.98 percent.

However, the ITC ruled that the Commerce Department lacked basis for critical circumstances and excluded imports in that period from the 5.41 percent tariff.

According to the US Commerce Department and the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency, the US imported wind towers from Korea worth $78.7 million last year, a 57 percent increase from $50 million in 2018 and a 1,200 percent surge from $6 million in 2017.

By Kim Byung-wook (