The European Commission has launched an investigation into the importing of fibre optical cables from China.

According to Reuters, the investigation has been triggered because European cable manufacturers believe the imported networking cables are being sold in Europe at artificially low prices.

News of the investigation emerged after the EU watchdog sent trade association Europacable a notice of its official probe, found here.

Cable dumping?

Europacable had brought the complaint on behalf of the EU producers. Its members are made up of European wire and cable producers.

“The European Commission (‘the Commission’) has received a complaint … on protection against dumped imports from countries not members of the European Union, alleging that imports of optical fibre cables (‘OFC’) originating in the People’s Republic of China are being dumped and are thereby causing injury to the Union industry,” said the EC in its official notice.

According to Europacable, approximately 1.2 million kilometres (745,000 miles) of cable were installed in Europe last year, with 15-20 percent coming from China.

Chinese imports rose by 150 percent from 2016 to 2019, the industry group said.

“Europacable welcomes the initiation of the anti-dumping investigation regarding the imports of single-mode optical fibre cables from China into the European Union by the European Commission,” said the trade association.

“Europacable and its member companies will actively assist and support the European Commission in the efforts to restore a level playing field in the European market for optical fibre cables,” it added. “Europacable members are strongly committed to maintain and, where necessary, to seek to restore, fair conditions of competition for the entire range of wire and cable products they represent on the European market.”

“Europe absolutely needs to maintain a strong and technologically advanced optical cable industry which urgently needs to ensure that it remains viable in this very challenging environment,” it concluded.

According to Reuters, EC anti-dumping investigations take up to 15 months, but provisional duties can be put in place within eight.

Final tariffs or penalties, if imposed, would normally apply for five years.

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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