India had complained that the US failed to meet an April 2016 deadline to comply with a WTO decision that faulted it over its imposition of “countervailing” duties on hot-rolled carbon steel products from India.
Despite US duties still applying, the WTO panel rejected many of India’s complaints, although it did say that the US needed to bring a legislative provision into line with WTO rules.
India brought its original complaint to the WTO in April 2012, after the US Department of Commerce set an import duty of nearly 286 percent on a circular welded carbon-quality steel pipe product from India to offset government subsidies.
The commerce department acted after receiving a petition from Allied Tube & Conduit, JMC Steel Group, Wheatland Tube and United States Steel Corp.
In 2014, the WTO found that for a variety of reasons, the US measures breached global trade rules. The two parties agreed that the US would comply with that ruling by 2016, but then disagreed over whether it had done so.
Either side could appeal against the panel’s latest findings. If a country does not comply with a WTO ruling, the other party can ask to impose sanctions.
In the extremely complex case, India argued that the market set the price of the steel pipe, but the US said the iron ore used to make it came from a state-run mining firm, the National Mineral Development Corporation, effectively subsidising Indian exporters.
India’s complaint alleging US noncompliance listed 14 areas where it said the US was in breach of the international trade rules.