by Ken Root
China is shutting out American ethanol and Distiller grains, saying our country is “dumping” them into their country and damaging their farmers.
We don’t like that, even though President Trump has given indication he wants to do the same thing to other countries who sell into the U.S.
So this makes the task of getting the New U.S. Trade Representative to re-open the market doubly delicate.
The U.S. Grains Council, along with the Renewable Fuels Association, and Growth Energy, are asking for help. They want help, in addressing China’s recent implementation of protectionist trade barriers that are shutting out U.S. exports of ethanol and distillers dried grains.
The U.S. Grains Council CEO Tom Sleight says, they’re asking the incoming U.S. Trade Representative to put China’s recent actions near the top of the administration’s China trade agenda.
“It’s a pretty straight forward request to the president, that he gives some attention to these issues on ethanol and DDG access, but more importantly our overall trade relationship with China in terms of agriculture, Sleight says. “This is something that’s really really important to a lot of folks in agriculture. I think that we’ve got to get this right.”
China heavily subsidizes its corn production. The new tariffs are 66 percent on DDG’s, and 30 to 40% on ethanol.
Last September, China imposed preliminary anti-dumping and countervailing duties on U.S. DDGS in response to a ruling against the U.S. on the dumping case they initiated in the WTO. Sleight says in a final ruling last month, China increased its DDGS anti-dumping duty to 42.2 to 53.7 percent and its DDGS countervailing duty to 11.2 to 12 percent.
Additionally, Sleight says the tariffs on U.S. ethanol have increased from five percent to 30 to 40 percent.
The letter written to President Donald Trump states that higher tariffs will put an immediate end to ethanol exports to China and have already been devastating to exports of U.S. DDGS. The groups ask that the tariff rates be included in any potential upcoming trade negotiations with China.