Product under consideration is the key factor for imposing Anti‐dumping duty. it is defined as the product which is being dumped and results into causing grave injury to the domestic market of the country concerned. So it becomes very important for the parties to give a proper description of the product for initiating investigation under Anti‐dumping law. Even a minute detail, if left out to be mentioned, can make a severe difference to the investigation and to the parties ultimately.
With an intention of not limiting the scope of product there is no set formula for defining the product under consideration. Even the Customs Tariff Act refers the product as “any article” which means that even different forms of Articles can be treated as one. For example if the products can be used interchangeably, it can fall under the head of same product or like product. Different countries have different classifications of product under consideration but there is no set formula for defining the product under consideration in India. The product should be defined as such that it can provide sufficient information for investigation and impose duty on the dumped products.
Parties, who produce alike product, can file petition for imposing Anti‐dumping. Parties need to be careful while defining the product, it needs to be checked if their product is similar, if not identical, and what are the factors of similarity. The description of product should be aimed towards minimizing evasion of Anti‐dumping duty. Parties can start initiation of investigation but it is for the Authorities to check if the description of product is proper, fair and not excessive. According to Final Finding of the Designated Authority the description of the product should be sufficient for the Customs purpose.
Products of different grade/form/type are treated as like products. Products need not be identical in nature but may be similar in physical or chemical characteristics or can have similar usage and functions. The comparisons between the products should be fair, also needs to be checked if it adversely affects the Domestic market or has likelihood of affecting in future.
Generally wide description of product leads to inclusion of products not being manufactured in Domestic market. Though the Authorities have adopted broad principal of exclusion but still inclusion and exclusion of product has always been a complex issue.
Undoubtedly the scope of product description is the most important and crucial factor for initiation of investigation for imposing Anti‐dumping duty. It can be said that product description decides the fate of the case and decides if Anti‐dumping duty can be imposed or not. It is essential to include all the components of products so that the purpose of trade remedies doesn’t become futile.
About Author: Ms. Neha Pandey,
Research Associate, TPM Consultants