EU bosses have announced plans to allow up to 12,000 tonnes of Chinese product to be imported before an additional levy of €155/tonne is imposed. Only importers who have previously purchased 500 tonnes-plus a year will qualify.
Under the title of ‘traditional importer’, EU traders will be granted the right to share the first tranche. After that the levy will apply as well as the current 17.6% duty. Even with surcharges, it seems Chinese packers may be able to compete with Spain, which announced prices similar to last season’s €6.30 per case fob for 24x312g whole segments and €4.90 for broken.
Spanish canners who have lobbied hard for protection against Chinese subsidies were unhappy. “This will allow German traders to enjoy a preference,” said one canner. With China
investing heavily in new factories, EU packers will be watching closely. Quality is comparable but service has been a failing, said a German buyer.
UK importers remain committed to Spain, but continue to suffer the euro/sterling 10% premium compared to last year.