×

UPDATE 1-China partially wins WTO case over Obama-era U.S. tariffs

(Adds background, detail)

GENEVA, March 21 (Reuters) - The United States did not fully comply with a 2014 ruling against its anti-subsidy tariffs on a range of Chinese products, a World Trade Organization compliance panel said in a ruling on Wednesday that either side can appeal within 20 days.

China went to the WTO in 2012 to challenge U.S. anti-subsidy tariffs on Chinese exports including solar panels, wind towers, steel cylinders and aluminium extrusions.

At the time it said its complaint covered an annual $7.3 billion in exports to the United States.

The WTO panel agreed that the United States had not correctly used third country prices to assess the subsidies, but supported the U.S. assertion that exporters were getting subsidies from Chinese "public bodies", despite Beijing's assertions to the contrary.

If China's complaint survives a potential appeal, it would move a step closer to retaliatory sanctions on U.S. trade, although the two sides would first have to settle on the value of sanctions, which would involve a round of legal argument.

The dispute centred on 17 investigations carried out by the U.S. Department of Commerce between 2007 and 2012.

The products concerned were solar panels, wind towers, thermal and coated paper, tow-behind lawn groomers, kitchen shelving, steel sinks, citric acid, magnesia carbon bricks, pressure pipe, line pipe, seamless pipe, steel cylinders, drill pipe, oil country tubular goods, wire strand and aluminium extrusions.

Many of China's complaints about specific investigations were rejected in the panel's 119-page report, but other points were upheld. (Reporting by Tom Miles, editing by Stephanie Nebehay and Mark Heinrich)