EU anti-subsidy case terminated, anti-dumping case ongoing

By Holly Jessen | December 12, 2012

The Council of European Union said Dec. 11 it would not oppose a European Commission decision to terminate the anti-subsidy proceeding concerning imports of U.S. ethanol and to terminate the registration of U.S. ethanol importers.

Growth Energy provided Ethanol Producer Magazine with a statement on the development. "The anti-subsidy case with the European Union has concluded and no duties will be imposed on U.S. companies," it said. "However, the anti-dumping case is still ongoing and a final decision has not been reached. Growth Energy remains committed to defending and protecting the U.S. ethanol industry from potential trade actions by the European Union.”

The European Producers Union of Renewable Ethanol, known as ePURE, told EPM in a Dec. 12 email that the anti-dumping investigation would wrap up by the end of February. On Dec. 6, it was reported that a European Commission general disclosure document contained a recommendation to EU member states for a 9.6 percent anti-dumping duty on imported U.S. ethanol. Separate anti-subsidy and anti-dumping investigations were initiated in the EU at the request of ePURE in November 2011.

The general disclosure document by the European Commission is not published publically and is only shared with the concerned parties in the legal case, ePURE said. The organization said it couldn’t comment specifically on whether duties will be imposed in the anti-dumping case or not. “We are pleased with the initial findings contained within the general disclosure document,” Florence Bouyala-Imbert, trade policy manager for ePURE, told Ethanol Producer Magazine. “However, due to the confidential nature of the proceedings, we do not plan to publish a public statement at this stage. As the legal process is incomplete, it would, therefore, be inappropriate to comment.”

The anti-dumping committee, composed of EU member states, still needs to make a decision on the European Commission’s disclosure document, ePURE said. “The committee is sometimes required to approve a decision submitted by the European Commission,” Bouyala-Imbert said. “At the level of the anti-dumping committee in the European Commission, a simple majority vote is required but if there is no agreement, the issue is brought to the European Council where a qualified majority is required.”