South Africa's European trading partners - Germany, the Netherlands and the UK - are being probed by the International Trade Administration Commission (Itac) for alleged dumping of frozen bone-in chicken portions.
The investigation follows the recent increase of import duties on five categories of imported chicken products. The new tariffs have already been introduced, but did not apply to imports from the European Union (EU), with which South Africa has a trade and co-operation agreement.
The South African Poultry Association has, however, brought an application against European poultry producers and exporters, claiming they are dumping their products in the South African Customs Union (Sacu) countries. Itac accepted the association's latest application on the grounds that there was prima facie evidence of dumping by the European countries that caused producers in Sacu material injury. The association constitutes about 72% of Sacu's frozen bone-in chicken portion production.
The application is supported by Grain SA, the Animal Feed Manufacturers Association, Namib Poultry Industries, Swazi Poultry Processors, the Botswana Poultry Association and the Basotho Poultry Farmers Association.
The commission received injury information from producers Afgri, County Fair, Early Bird (Olifantsfontein), Early Bird (Standerton), Rainbow Chicken, Sovereign Foods and Supreme Poultry. According to the information, there has been a decline in the producers' return on investment and they have experienced negative net cash flows, negative effects on capacity utilisation, a decline in profits, an increase in inventory and a decrease in productivity.
Source: The International Trade Administration Commission (Itac)