Indonesia Challenges EU: WTO Stainless Steel Spat

WTOImage Source: SteelGuru


Indonesia takes on the European Union, filing a complaint with the World Trade Organization over anti-dumping duties on stainless steel cold-rolled flat. This marks Indonesia's third case against the EU, alleging unfair practices and subsidies. The EU's countervailing duties on SSCRF, imposed on India and Indonesia, have sparked tensions. The dispute centers on EU concerns about Chinese-owned steel companies in Indonesia, accusing the country of benefiting from Chinese subsidies. The potential annual losses for Indonesia due to imposed duties could reach 40 million euros.


In a move signaling heightened trade tensions, Indonesia has lodged a formal complaint against the European Union (EU) with the World Trade Organization (WTO) regarding anti-dumping duties on stainless steel cold-rolled flat (SSCRF). Bara Krishna Hasibuan, Special Staff to the Minister of Trade for International Agreements, confirmed the filing, citing the EU's imposition of additional import duties as the core issue.

"This is our third case. They imposed additional import duties on the EU," said Hasibuan in Timika, Central Papua, on December 3, 2023.

The EU had previously imposed countervailing duties on SSCRF against India and Indonesia, with rates of 21 percent and 7.5 percent, respectively. Additionally, since 2021, the EU has levied anti-dumping duties ranging from 10.2 to 31.5 percent. The dispute arises from allegations that Indonesia benefits from subsidies provided by the Chinese government, particularly through Chinese-owned steel companies operating within the country.

Bara explained the EU's perspective, stating, "EU believed that to be unfair practices. Akin to the EU purchasing Chinese products but with the production located in Indonesia, subsidized by the Chinese government. We'll start the process next year, we have delivered the complaint officially."

The steel export to Europe has seen an uptick in demand for Indonesia. However, the imposition of countervailing duties and anti-dumping duties poses a significant threat, potentially leading to annual losses amounting to 40 million euros for the country.


Indonesia's decision to file a WTO complaint against the European Union underscores the rising tensions over anti-dumping duties on stainless steel. The dispute, fueled by concerns about unfair practices and subsidies, marks the third case initiated by Indonesia against the EU. The potential economic impact, with annual losses reaching 40 million euros, highlights the gravity of the situation. As the formal process begins in the coming year, the outcome will have lasting implications for the trade relationship between Indonesia and the EU.

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