BEIJING, June 13 — Chinese firms reserve the right to request anti-subsidy and anti-dumping investigations into European dairy and pork imports, the country’s commerce ministry said today, when asked whether industry groups were lobbying it to do so.

Following the European Commission’s announcement yesterday that it would impose extra duties of up to 38.1 per cent on imported Chinese electric cars from July, global food companies are on high alert for potential retaliatory tariffs from China as are companies in other sectors.

“With regard to the issue you mentioned, Chinese domestic industries reserve the right to file an application to open an investigation to safeguard normal market competition and their legitimate rights and interests,” He Yadong, a commerce ministry spokesperson, said in response to a question from Reuters.


China’s state media have reported that domestic companies are preparing to request such investigations, which could result in lengthy trade suspensions.

The state-backed Global Times newspaper on Saturday reported that Chinese companies planned to ask authorities to open an anti-subsidy investigation into some dairy products from the EU and an anti-dumping investigation into some European pork products, both times citing an unidentified “business insider.”

In January, China opened an anti-dumping investigation on brandy imported from the EU, prompted by a complaint submitted by the China Alcoholic Beverages Association on behalf of the domestic brandy industry.


Chinese authorities have previously dropped hints about possible retaliatory measures through state media commentaries and interviews with industry figures.

The commerce ministry spokesperson said an “investigating authority” would review any hypothetical application and make a public announcement if it met the “filing conditions.” — Reuters