23 Dec 2009 05:27

Russia may extend duty on pipe imports (repeat)

Moscow. December 23. INTERFAX - The Russian government's foreign trade commission has recommended extending the duration of an 8 percent import duty on large-diameter pipe, the commission said in a press release on Dec. 22.

The original duty period expired on Dec. 21, and the commission recommends that this be extended until 2012.

Major Russian pipe producers Chelyabinsk Tube Rolling Plant, Vyksa Steel Works, which is controlled by United Metallurgical Company, and Volzhsky Pipe Mill have been lobbying the Industry and Trade Ministry to extend the duties.

Meanwhile, Gazprom and a number of oil companies said at a meeting chaired by Russian Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin at the end of July that they thought the import duties and quotas on pipe ought to be scrapped, as Russian producers were not filling the niche.

Most imported pipe originates in China and Ukraine. A special status applies to shipments from Ukraine, where the Interpipe holding is allowed to ship pipe duty-free under set quotas.