The Australian plastics industry has initiated government investigations into alleged dumping of high density polyethylene, polyester and polyether-based thermoplastic polyurethane in Australia.
Two separate applications have been lodged with the Australian Customs Service by Melbourne-based plastics companies Qenos Pty. Ltd. and Townsend Chemicals Pty. Ltd.
Tony Wilson, Townsend Chemicals' marketing manager, alleged that exporters from the United States, Germany and Italy dumped low-priced polyester and TPU into the Australian market between Jan. 1 and June 30, 2002, causing ``material injury'' to the domestic plastics industry.
Qenos alleged HDPE exported from South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Sweden and Thailand came into the market at dumped prices, causing financial harm to the Australian plastics market. Exports between Oct. 1, 2001, and Sept. 30, 2002, were subject to investigation.
Customs said it will make recommendations on the alleged dumping of TPU to Australia's trade minister by Feb. 27 and on the alleged dumping of HDPE by March 15.
If customs investigations find dumping caused material injury to the Australian market, a dumping duty could be imposed. Such duties in Australia usually are imposed for five years, the Australian Customs Service said.
Another remedy is for exporting companies to warrant that future trade will be ``at or above a minimum export price [equal to the normal value].'' Such undertakings also usually apply for five years.