EU aluminium firms' dumping complaints groundless, Chinese association says

BEIJING, Feb 22 (Reuters) - A European Union probe into whether China is dumping aluminium extrusions is a result of "internal" factors at the companies that complained and Chinese producers should not have to bear the consequences, China's metal association said on Saturday.

Aluminium extrusions are widely used in transport, construction and electronics. China is by far the world's biggest aluminium producer and its extrusions have already faced anti-dumping duties in the United States, Canada, Australia and Vietnam.

"China's aluminium extrusion products have not caused damage to the EU's relevant industries and there is no dumping in Europe," the China Nonferrous Metals Industry Association said in a statement, stressing that Chinese firms benefited from advanced technology and cost controls.

Expressing "firm opposition" to the case, it said if the need arises, it would recommend that the Chinese government adopt countermeasures to safeguard the "legitimate rights and interests" of exporters.

The European Commission on Feb. 14 said it had opened the dumping investigation after a complaint by industry group European Aluminium representing seven producers.

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Wen Xianjun, a vice chairman of the association, had already said he would organise Chinese companies to "actively respond" to the complaint. Wen is also an independent non-executive director at China's top aluminium extruder, China Zhongwang Holdings Ltd.

Trade protectionism violating the rules of free market competition "will not only harm the interests of Chinese exporting companies but also hurt the interests of downstream users and related industries in Europe," the association said.

"It is hoped that the European Commission will respect the facts, listen to the opinions of various parties and make a fair ruling," it added. (Reporting by Tom Daly. Editing by Gerry Doyle)

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