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RP, Sokor trade row to be resolved soon

() - March 21, 2001 - 12:00am
A trade dispute between the Philippines and South Korea may be resolved as trade officials from both countries finally agreed to meet in the next few months to iron out their differences.

Industry sources said that Philippine and Korean trade representatives met earlier this year in Geneva to hold preliminary talks regarding their disagreement over high tariff walls imposed by the Philippine government on Korean petrochemical products.

South Korea was poised to file a complaint with the World Trade Organization (WTO) against the Philippines for slapping high tariffs against the petrochem products of Hyundai and the LG Group.

The Philippine Tariff Commission last year slapped an anti-dumping duty on polypropylene resins coming from South Korea. The anti-dumping duty was between $10 to $15 per metric tons, on top of a 15 percent duty and would be imposed for five years.

Polypropylene resins are the raw material used to manufacture plastic sacks, bags, ropes, furniture, appliance casings and packaging.

South Korea questioned the imposition of the anti-dumping duties, arguing that their exports to the Philippines of those products had actually declined.

Local petrochemical companies such as JG Petrochemical Corp. and Petrochemical Corp. of Asia and Pacific last year also field anti-dumping case against several South Korean petrochemical firms.

These South Korean firms include Hyundai, the LG Group, Dae Lim, Hanwah, Kolon, SK Global, Jinwon Trading, Sekitoku, Sewon and Hyosung.

The two Philippine petrochemical firms claimed that the South Koreans had been selling their polypropylene resins at a discount since 1998. – Marianne Go

ASIA AND PACIFIC DAE LIM HYUNDAI JINWON TRADING MARIANNE GO PETROCHEMICAL CORP PHILIPPINE AND KOREAN PHILIPPINE TARIFF COMMISSION SOUTH KOREA
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