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SC allows appeal of RIL on anti-dumping duty

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Sep 12 (UNI) The Supreme Court has held ''the anti-dumping law is extremely important for the country's industrial progress, hence there should be total transparency and clearness in its implementation. The anti-dumping law is therefore a salutary measure which prevents destruction of the domestic industries.'' The ruling was handed down yesterday by a bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhan and Markandeya Katju while disposing of the appeal of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) against the order of Customs Excise and Gold (control) Appellate Tribunal ''CEGAT'' dated November 25, 2000, upholding the order of Designated Authority (DA).

The CEGAT had upheld the DA order holding that the exports from Japan, Malaysia and Taiwan were not liable to pay anti-dumping duty while on exports from Spain, anti-dumping duty was imposed at the rate of Rs 521 per Metric Tonne.

The appellant is a multi-product company and is involved in various business activities including manufacture of Pure Terephatalic Acid (PTA) which is used for the manufacture of Polyester yarn. The yarn is in turn used for the manufacture of textile.

The ground for not imposing anti-dumping duty on exports from Japan, Malaysia and Taiwan was that imports from these countries were above the non-injurious price (NIP).

In a 46-page judgement written by Justice Katju, the court has held ''In our opinion excessive and unwarranted claim of confidentiality defeats the right to appeal. In the absence of knowledge of the consequences, grounds, reasoning and methodology by which the DA has arrived at the decision and made its recommendation, the parties to the proccedings can not effecively exercise the right to appeal either before the tribunal or the court. This is contrary to the view taken by the constitution bench of the court in S N Mukherjee case.'' Justice Katju pleading to make India an industrially developed and powerful country on earth concluded by observing 'We would like to state that our national aim must be create India as a modern, highly industralised, powerful state. The real world today is cruel and harsh. It respects power, not poverty or weakness and power comes from a high level of industralisation. Hence, if we wish to get respect in the comity of nations, we must make India modern, powerful highly industralised state. The truth is that today India is poor.

India is a rich country with poor people. We are rich in raw materials, rich in industrial skills, we have outstanding scientists, engineers, tecnicians and managers. Despite all this we are a poor nation.'' The court also held illegal the reduction in the cost price of electricity, supplied by the Reliance from its captive power plant as DA did not disclose reasons for such reduction. The court also ruled that the DA had failed to appreciate that once dumping and injury was established, the existence of an unfair trade practice by the exporter is proved and computing and unduly law and NIP would lead to granting a premium to the erring exporters at the cost of a domestic industry which is suffering injury and hence the DA's determination of NIP was arbitrary and misguided as actual producion achieved by the domestic industry for the purpose of apportionment of fixed cost.

The RIL had to suffer loss due to arbitrary reduction in the price of power imposed by DA.

UNI AKS/SC SI RP KN1711

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