Glass imports to be slapped with new tariffs

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has slapped definitive safeguard duties on imported glass products after it found merit on the complaint filed by Japanese-owned Asahi Glass Philippines Inc. on the unabated influx of cheap glass products into the country.

Trade Secretary Cesar Purisima told reporters Thursday that the DTI has decided to impose safeguard duties on all imported glass mirrors, figured glass, and float glass products for three years after the Tariff Commission found evidence that the increased importation has injured the domestic industry.

“The DTI has solid ground to impose additional duties on all imported glass mirrors, figured glass and float glass products,” he said.

According to Purisima, the DTI would impose safeguard duties on all glass imports for three years that would be reduced by 5 percent annually on the second and third years of implementation. On the first year, a definitive safeguard duty of P2,655 per metric ton (MT) would be imposed on figured glass; P5,110 per MT on copper-based glass mirrors; P5,850 per MT on tinted float glass; and P4,630 per MT on clear float glass.

Purisima pointed out that the DTI based the additional tariffs on the price difference between the domestic net selling prices and the lowest landed cost of imports.

The DTI, however, clarified that the additional import duties would only be slapped on copper-based glass mirrors due to the difference in product characteristics with other glass mirror variants and after evaluating the sensitivities of important trading partners such as Thailand.

Last September, the DTI imposed provisional safeguard duties on all these glass products for a period of 200 days. The DTI imposed provisional measures in the form of a cash bond amounting to P3,560 per MT on framed and unframed glass mirrors; P2,000 per MT on clear float glass; P2,650 per MT on tinted float glass; and P1,535 per MT on figured glass.

Figured glass are used for windows, partitions, screens, doors and flourescent fixtures, while glass mirrors are used for wardrobe doors, bathroom, furniture, projection screens, display cases, decorative wall, ceiling and pillar cases. Clear and tinted float glass are used for exterior and interior window, glass openings, curtain walls, showcase windows, furniture applications, interior room partitions, basic glass for mirrors, safety glass, laminated glass, ballistic glass, tempered glass and other decorative applications.

Asahi Glass sought relief under Republic Act 8800, otherwise known as the Safeguard Measures Act of 2000, after increased imports of glass products from 1997 to 2000 caused serious damage to the domestic industry in terms of declining market share, domestic sales, capacity utilization, production, profitability and increased inventory.

Purisima pointed out that the DTI used the safeguard measures to determine whether there was an increase in volume of imports of like or directly competitive products that was injurious to the local glass industry.

600450 Glass imports to be slapped with new tariffs

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