Select Committee on European Union Fortieth Report


Letter from Ian Pearson MP, Minister for Trade, Investment and Foreign Affairs, Department of Trade and Industry/Foreign and Commonwealth Office to the Chairman

  After submission of EM 8721/03, The European Scrutiny Committee asked to be kept informed about a UK request for trade defence action against imports into the European Community of farmed salmon from Norway, which threatened the livelihood of salmon farmers in the Scottish Highlands and Islands. Douglas Alexander subsequently wrote on 1 March 2005[94] to update both Committees on recent developments.

  As you will recall, the European Commission was conducting an anti-dumping investigation into imports of salmon following Member State opposition to proposed safeguard measures.

  I am pleased to be able to tell you that on 22 January 2006, the Council will adopt a Regulation imposing anti-dumping measures on imports of farmed salmon. As you know the DTI has a derogation to submit EMs on Council Regulations imposing anti-dumping measures after their adoption and their publication in the Official Journal. We will of course do so in this case. However, in view of your Committee's request on this issue, I considered it desirable to send you the latest information as soon as it was available.

  The Government has sought to defend indigenous Scottish salmon farmers from dumped imports of farmed salmon originating in Norway, with the aim of bringing stability to the market. The UK supported the anti-dumping complaint submitted by the Scottish (and Irish) salmon farmers and supported the Commission's proposal to impose definitive anti-dumping measures first presented to Member States shortly before Christmas. These measures impose definitive anti-dumping measures on imports of farmed salmon from Norway in the form of a Minimum Import Price (MIP) of €2.80 per kilo (whole fish equivalent) except for imports from one company, whose dumping was found to be "de minimis". Under an MIP, duty equivalent to the difference between the price at the Community frontier and the MIP would be payable only if the market price were to fall below the MIP.

  This measure represents a small modification of provisional anti-dumping duties imposed by Commission Regulation in April 2005. Initially these took the form of ad valorem duties ranging between 6.8% and 24.5% of the value of the imported products. However, following further discussions with EU processors and Norwegian exporters, and with the agreement of the producers, the measures were amended in July 2005 to a minimum import price ("MIP"). The MIP was set at a level of €2.81 per kilo (whole fish equivalent) with higher MIPs for different presentations eg salmon fillets. The Commission at this time also proposed a three month extension of the provisional measures until 22 January 2006.

  Throughout this episode the Government has worked closely with the Scottish Executive, as well as liaising with Scottish producers and EU Salmon Producers Group (EUSPG) and consulting user interests represented by the Food and Drinks Federation.

20 January 2006

94   Correspondence with Ministers, 4th Report of Session 2005-06, HL Paper 16, pp 232-233. Back

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