Chicken Industry

Chicken importers omit inconvenient tariff details

Speaking of statistical manipulation, chicken importers are masters in a class of their own.

Chicken importer Hume International has been leading the charge for a further delay on the imposition of anti-dumping duties on bone-in chicken imports from Brazil and four EU countries.

The tariffs, if imposed in August, will differ from producer to producer in the five countries concerned, ranging from very low to very high. Importers, of course, quote only the high figure when arguing that the duties will raise local prices and anger our trading partners.

Hume International’s Roy Thomas said South Africa planned “265%, 158.4%, 96.9%, 85.8% and 67.4% import tariffs on Brazil, Ireland, Poland, Spain and Denmark, respectively, on August 1”.

In fact, the final determination of the tariffs last August specified a range for Brazil of between 3.31% and 265.1%, for Denmark 7.75% to 67.4%, for Poland 2.25% to 96.9% and for Spain 7.56% to 85.8%. For Ireland, the range is 2.49% to 37.52%, not the high of 158% that importers are wrongly quoting.

Perhaps it doesn’t suit their argument to mention that, for some producers, the tariffs on bone-in chicken sent to South Africa might only be between 2% and 7%.