DGTR Recommends Safeguard Duty On Import Of Single Mode Optical Fibre
Fibre-optic cables feed into a server inside a comms room at an office in London, U.K. (Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg)  

DGTR Recommends Safeguard Duty On Import Of Single Mode Optical Fibre

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The Commerce Ministry’s investigation arm has recommended imposition of safeguard duty of 10% on single-mode optical fibre, used for signal transmission, for one year as it has found a significant surge in imports of the product.

The Directorate General of Trade Remedies had conducted the probe following an application filed by Sterlite Technologies Ltd. and Birla Furukawa Fibre Optics.

These firms had sought imposition of safeguard duty on import of single-mode optical fibre. They claimed that there has been a sudden, sharp and significant increase in imports in 2018-19, which has continued to be at high levels.

"Considering all circumstances and the extent of serious injury, a safeguard duty of 10% is proposed to be imposed ad valorem on CIF (cost, insurance, and freight) price on the imports...from all countries with the exception of the developing countries," according to the notification of the directorate.

It added that import of these fibres from developing countries listed in an earlier customs notification of 2016, (other than China) will not attract this duty.

The duty on imports, it said, is proposed to be levied for a period of "one year".

Single-mode optical fibre are imported from various countries including China, Japan, the U.S. and Korea. The major quantity is imported from China.

The directorate, in its probe, concluded that the product is being imported into lndia in "such increased quantities" that it can "cause or threaten to cause serious injury" to the domestic manufacturers.

The existing circumstances justify the imposition of the duty in order to protect the domestic players from further serious injury, "which may be difficult to repair".

The Finance Ministry will take the final decision to impose duty.

Also read: Imported Toys To Undergo Mandatory Quality Checks From Sept. 1: Ram Vilas Paswan

Safeguard duty is a trade remedy available to World Trade Organization member-countries. It is imposed to provide a level-playing field to domestic players in case of a sudden and significant increase in imports of a product.

Single mode optical fibres are mainly used for high-data rate, long distance and access network transportation.

Major consumption is driven by 3G/4G/5G roll out by telcos, connectivity of gram panchayats, defence and data centres.

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