U.S. trade officials are asking China to enter into discussions about whether they have complied with global trade rules on duties on high-tech steel exports.
U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman announced on Monday that the United States has requested consultations with China on its failure to bring antidumping and countervailing duties on U.S. exports of grain oriented flat-rolled electrical steel (GOES) into compliance with its WTO obligations.
"Today’s action shows that when the United States steps up to the plate on trade enforcement, we will follow through," he said.
"We are committed to ensuring that our trading partners play by the rules, and respond with appropriate action when they are found to be in violation."
This is the first time the United States has initiated a proceeding in the WTO to challenge a claim by China that it has complied in a WTO dispute.
USTR said that China’s actions have cut off more than $250 million in exports of the steel.
“We believe the evidence is clear that China has not brought its duties into compliance with WTO rules," Froman said.
In 2012, the United States won a dispute at the WTO that China broke global rules with its duties on GOES.
"Supporting American jobs is our number one job," Froman said.
Froman emphasized that since 2009 the United States has double the rate of its enforcement cases and actions.
“We are committed to ensuring that our trading partners play by the rules – and respond with appropriate action when they are found to be in violation," he said.
AK Steel Corporation, based in Ohio, and Allegheny Ludlum in Pennsylvania, manufacture GOES.