Chinese firms should face up to anti-dumping charges and respond actively to lawsuits by correctly using WTO rules to protect their legitimate rights and interests, Chinese legislators and entrepreneurs said in Beijing Wednesday.
With the rise of trade protectionism, it is quite normal that Chinese firms fall pray of anti-dumping charges as their products are very competitive due to cheap labor, said Li Guoguang, NPC deputy and vice-president of the Supreme People's Court.
The thing is to respond actively, with reason and restraint, added Nan Cunhui, the boss of China's biggest low-voltage electrical appliances plant. "Even if we lose, we can also learn many things. If we avert such charges, it is very likely to bring misfortune to the whole industry."
Li Guoguang told Chinese entrepreneurs not to be afraid of losing in lawsuits, not to be afraid of spending money and not to be afraid of encountering difficulties, adding "face up to the lawsuits in a composed manner. He appreciated the positive attitude of enterprises in Zhejiang, where 100 percent of enterprises have responded to anti-dumping charges and 40 percent of them have won.
In 1999, the United States carried out anti-dumping investigations against 30 Chinese apple juice producers. After the arbitration by the US department of commerce, six of the ten enterprises answering the lawsuits obtained a zero tariff and the other four got a 23.38 percent weighted average tariff. But those who failed to answer the lawsuits were subject to a 51.74 percent tax rate.
Of course, we should find a way of avoiding being charged with dumping, Nan Cunhui said. Before entering the international market, it is necessary to get well prepared and study the intellectual property right law, the international trade law and tax laws and quality law of the countries concerned and invite experts in these areas to advise on the trading practices.
In panel discussions with NPC deputies, Chinese leaders cautioned Chinese entrepreneurs that WTO rules protect fair competition but not backward enterprises and they urged Chinese enterprises to give up their low-cost expansion strategy, strive to have their own intellectual property rights and avoid anti-dumping lawsuits as much as possible.
(Xinhua News Agency March 11, 2004)