The World Trade Organization (WTO) ruled in favour of Indonesia on 23 January in the case the country brought against the EU anti-dumping duties on Indonesian biodiesel exports.
Initiated by Indonesia in 2014, the case was a response to EU anti-dumping measures enacted on Argentine and Indonesian biodiesel in 2013, Reuters reported on 25 January.
The WTO ruling stated that the EU had acted inconsistently with several of its policies by disregarding biodiesel prices recorded by Indonesian producers and failing to correctly calculate a normal profit margin. The bloc now had to conform its measures to WTO agreements.
Indonesian Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita called the ruling a “landslide victory” for Indonesia and projected that it would significantly boost the value of the country’s biodiesel exports, which had plummeted from US$649M in 2013 to US$150M in 2016.
Lukita now expected the exports to reach a value of US$1.7bn by 2020, Reuters wrote.
The EU originally imposed the duties, ranging from 8.8% to 20.5% for Indonesia, based on claims that biodiesel producers in both Indonesia and Argentina imposed an export duty on the raw material for their biodiesel – palm oil in Indonesia and soyabeans in Argentina – which allowed their biodiesel producers to lower their costs and unfairly dump biodiesel into Europe.
This situation, the EU claimed, forced it to construct a “normal value” for the biodiesel as the markets in both origin countries were heavily regulated.
These measures, now dismissed by the WTO, were called by Indonesia and Argentina as protectionist.
The EU earlier in January decided to withdraw its planned appeal against the WTO’s ruling on both Indonesia and Argentina, although the actual withdrawal could take some time.
In a related move, the EU also intended to launch an investigation into whether Argentine biodiesel producers benefited from unfair subsidies, Reuters wrote on 25 January.
The investigation came in response to a complaint by the European Biodiesel Board and could possibly allow the EU to impose new tariffs to replace those dismissed by both the WTO and the General Court of the EU in 2016.
The now terminated anti-dumping duties on Argentina ranged from 22% to 25.7%, but were lowered to 4.5-8.1% last year.