The EU authorities introduced fixed duties on Russian hot-rolled steel. We are talking about the products of three giants of domestic metallurgy: Severstal, Novolipetsk and Magnitogorsk metallurgical plants (NLMK and MMK). According to the document, which was published and came into force at the end of last week, the amount of duty for Severstal is 17,60 euros per ton, for NLMK - 53,30 euro per ton and 96,50 euro per ton for MMK.
The reason for the introduction of duties in the European Commission is the dumping of Russian exporters, which took place between July 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016. The proof of this fact in the EU is that on the domestic market the products of Russian producers were worth more than in Europe. Fees are introduced for a five-year term. Similar measures on the part of European authorities were carried out by metallurgical companies from Brazil, Iran and Ukraine. Representatives of all three domestic companies state that the decision of the European Commission will not have a big impact on their business. MMK says that Russia remains the priority market for it, and European volumes can be redistributed to other markets, including to Asia. In NLMK, they even count on strengthening the positions of the group's factories in Europe (it owns enterprises in France, Italy and Belgium).
In Severstal, which received the minimum amount of duty, consider the conclusions of the European Commission on dumping as erroneous. Representatives of the company note that in the period that attracted the attention of the EC, there was an unfavorable global situation and "catastrophically low prices" that affected the whole industry. Now, as they say in Severstal, the price for hot-rolled products exported to Europe is 60% higher than the investigation period.
Comments of Russian metallurgists on the decision of the European Commission do not disprove its main conclusion: in the domestic market, the products of NLMK, MMK and Severstal in the specified period were sold more expensive than abroad. The authorities of the European Union considered this as dumping, and the Federal Antimonopoly Service of the Russian Federation could see signs of collusion in the actions of metallurgists, but did not do so. Assuming that the conspiracy actually took place, the situation when inflated prices in Russia turn into sanctions in Europe, looks more than amusing.