Turkey is the second largest export market for U.S. cotton, but now that is being threatened by what the National Cotton Council (NCC) maintains are false allegations.
The government of Turkey has claimed the United States dumped cotton into the Turkish market, injuring their domestic prices. They have now released their final decision, based on their investigation of the incident. In response to the dumping, Turkey has imposed a three percent CIF (cost, insurance and freight) duty on all cotton fiber from the U.S., effective immediately. The duty puts the United States at a competitive disadvantage and jeopardizes business with Turkish mills.
NCC Chairman Shane Stephens reports that the investigation is in response to U.S. investigation of Turkish steel imports and the self-ititiated investigation is unusual, as Turkey failed to show signs of a special circumstance as required by World Trade Organization rules.
“In the first place, the investigation itself lacked transparency regarding information used to justify the investigation,” Stephens said. “In fact, data used in support of a finding of injury to the Turkish domestic cotton market ignored established facts to the contrary.”
Stephens said that the Council submitted ample evidence showing that Turkey’s cotton market has experienced price declines due to the same factors affecting cotton markets worldwide. He said, for example, government policies in developing countries and competition from manmade fibers have contributed to stagnant global demand, increased stocks and lower cotton prices.
“Unfortunately, the import duties only compound the difficult economic climate facing U.S. cotton growers and merchandisers,” Stephens stated. “The Council will continue to actively oppose the imposition of duties and is exploring ways to reverse the decision, such as WTO mechanisms and the Turkish judicial system.”