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Emerging economies restricting imports from Korea.

As global competition intensifies in the steel and chemical industries, import restraints on Korean steel products are increasing rapidly in emerging nations, a report said Monday.

According to the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA), out of 23 antidumping or safeguard investigations into Korean exports launched in the first half of this year, 19 were in emerging markets, such as India, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

Foreign regulations affecting Korea's steel exports have been sharply increasing, it said. Seventeen complaints were filed in the first half with 14 by India and Southeast Asian nations.

As of June 30, 29 countries were regulating the imports of 169 Korean products in one way or another, three more than on last Dec. 31. Import restrictions on steel products numbered 130, or 76.9 percent of the total, an increase of nine from the end of last year, pointing to the higher barrier to steel trade, the KOTRA report said.

India was the most frequent regulator of Korean imports, with 31 cases, up five from Dec. 31. Following India were the U.S. (21 cases), China (11), Indonesia (11), Brazil (10), Thailand and Turkey (nine each).

Antidumping was the most common regulation, with 118 cases, or 69.8 percent, up 4 percentage points from December, resulting in 44 safeguard steps.

The report expected trade protectionist measures would increase in the second half of the year. Emerging countries are likely to invoke safeguard measures to protect their industries even when foreigners do not resort to unfair trade practices, such as dumping, as well as setting up various non-tariff barriers, including import permission and certification systems.

"Korean exporters will need to watch overseas industrial trends and foreign governments' policies closely to set up countermeasures beforehand while trying to avoid disadvantages resulting from their failure to cope positively with antidumping complaints or investigations thereafter," said Song Yu-hwang, chief of the trade support office. "KOTRA will also actively help exporters tide over the protectionist wave by diversifying export markets and advancing to foreign markets through direct investment."

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Publication:The Korea Times News (Seoul, Korea)
Geographic Code:9INDI
Date:Jul 25, 2016
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