Vietnam calls for fair deal from US on import tariffs

By Khanh Lynh   April 6, 2018 | 01:09 pm GMT+7
Vietnam calls for fair deal from US on import tariffs
Workers place fish fillets to froze at a factory in Can Tho, Vietnam, July 7, 2017. Vietnam's pangasius faces import tariff of $7.74 per kilo from the U.S. Photo by Reuters/Kham
Vietnam's foreign ministry made the statement following a flurry of import tariffs in recent months.

Vietnam has called for a fair deal from the U.S. regarding its imposition of import tariffs on Vietnamese products, said a representative from Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs at a press conference on Thursday.

Ministry spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang said commerce disputes between Vietnam and the U.S. should be settled in accordance with World Trade Organization guidelines and reflect the comprehensive partnership between the two countries.

“The economic-commerce relationship between Vietnam and the U.S. is still growing, and the two sides are actively working on problems that are in both countries’ interests,” she added.

The U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) has decided to apply a higher tariff for Vietnamese pangasius exports following the completion of an anti-dumping investigation on March 15. The new tariff stands at $7.74 per kilo on products from the two companies that were the subject of the investigation, while other exporters face a fee of $3.87 per kilo, the highest tax the U.S. has ever imposed on Vietnamese pangasius. Four days later, Vietnam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade issued a statement saying the toll was “not objective” and reflected a protectionist stance.

Earlier in March, the DOC slapped a preliminary tax of 25.36 percent on Vietnamese shrimp, the highest rate in the past 13 years. According to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers, a mistake has been made in the calculation of dumping margin. The group has asked the U.S. to reconsider the tariffs, saying they could have an impact on importers in the U.S. as well as Vietnamese exporters.

Back in February, the DOC asked President Donald Trump to impose steep curbs on steel and aluminum imports from China and other countries, including Vietnam. According to the DOC’s proposals, Vietnam will face a 53 percent tariff on its steel and aluminum products exported to the U.S. Vietnam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade has since issued a statement saying Vietnamese aluminum products only accounted for a small percentage of U.S. imports, and asked the U.S. to reconsider the tariff. President Trump has until next Wednesday to decide if the motion will pass.

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