Brussels, Belgium – The European Union (EU) has initiated anti-subsidy and anti-dumping investigations of imports of biodiesel from the United States. Examination of complaints lodged by European industry found that an investigation was warranted, with sufficient evidence provided to indicate subsidies to the U.S. biodiesel sector and dumping of biodiesel in the European market, with an adverse effect on the European biodiesel industry.

A detailed investigation by the Commission will now determine whether measures are justified under EU trade rules.

“We have always said that the EU will not tolerate unfair trade practices, and will pursue vigorously any well-founded complaint,” said Peter Power, EU Spokesperson for Trade. “The Commission will leave no stone unturned in these investigations and will act in accordance with the findings.”

Anti-subsidy and anti-dumping complaints were lodged with the Commission on April 29 by the European Biodiesel Board, which represents the interests of a major proportion of EU biodiesel producers. The Commission said that the complainant has provided sufficient evidence of subsidies to the biodiesel sector in the U.S., including federal excise and income tax credits, as well as a federal program of grants to finance increased production capacity. Various subsidy programs also exist at state level. The complainant has also provided sufficient evidence of biodiesel dumping on the EU market.

The Commission will now investigate the allegations and will make its provisional findings by March 13, 2009 at the latest. Biodiesel imports into the EU market come mainly from the U.S., with other imports accounting for a minor share of the market. Imports of U.S. biodiesel have increased from about 7,000 tonnes in 2005 to about one million tonnes in 2007.

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