The Ministry of Commerce and Industry has initiated an investigation into the imports of stainless steel. The Directorate General of Trade Remedies, which falls under the ministry, said on Thursday that it had begun an investigation of imports of allegedly subsidised welded stainless steel pipes and tubes from China and Vietnam.

The Directorate General of Trade Remedies said there is primary evidence that such subsidies were hurting the Indian domestic steel industry. “The authority finds that there is prima facie evidence of existence of countervailable subsidies on production and export of the subject goods in People’s Republic of China and Vietnam, and such subsidised imports are causing material injury to the domestic industry through their volume and price effects,” it said.

The trade authority said that the decision to investigate the subsidies was taken based on an application jointly filed by several steel associations in India. It added that it has initiated an inquiry to “determine the existence, degree and effect of alleged subsidisation and to recommend the amount of countervailing duty”. Such countervailing duty could then be levied to “remove the injury to the domestic industry”, the authority added.