China Cutting Steel Export Rebates Amid Trade Complaints

BEIJING (AP) - China will cut export tax rebates on steel, an industry group announced Tuesday, amid pressure on Beijing to rein in rapid growth in exports.

The China Iron and Steel Association said rebates for some steel products will be cut from 8 percent to 5 percent, while rebates for other products will be eliminated completely. The change takes effect April 15.

China, like many other nations, refunds value-added and other taxes on exported goods to help companies hold down their prices abroad. China is the world's biggest steel producer and its trading partners are complaining about low-cost Chinese exports flooding their markets.

Chinese leaders also have expressed concern about pollution and environmental damage caused by steel production. Premier Wen Jiabao said last month that the government will shut down antiquated steel producers in an attempt to curb pollution.

China's steel exports reached a record high in March, shipping 5.4 million metric tons, according to government figures.

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