The European Union has given its final approval to duties on imports of Chinese ceramic tiles into the European market. The duty rate, which comes into effect today and will be valid for the next five years, differs between Chinese companies that have collaborated with the survey (30.6% on average) and those that have not (69.7%).

In a procedure that began on June 19, 2010, more than 70 company questionnaires were compiled in six community countries representing an output of over 300 million square metres, more than 30% of the entire volume of the 27 European member states. It was a lengthy procedure that aimed to protect all parties concerned through a thorough investigation and also involved the United States as a control country.   

“The introduction of duties is needed to restore a fair level of competition and to allow European ceramic tile producers to remain competitive in Europe in the same way as they are in foreign markets,” commented Alfonso Panzani, chairman of the European Ceramic Tile Manufacturers’ Federation CET. “This is an important achievement made possible by the cohesion of all the European Associations and by the work of the companies involved, whom I wish to thank. Praise is also due to the European Commission for its work.”    

“We now expect that the five-year duties will enable a situation of free competition to be restored between the parties and will also eliminate in the conditions that made the procedure necessary in the first place,” added Franco Manfredini, chairman of Confindustria Ceramica. “In the meantime, the Italian ceramic tile industry will continue as in the past to make every effort in conjunction with the national institutions to further improve its competiveness through innovation, production quality and style.”