The World Trade Organisation (WTO) has ruled that the European Union (EU) broke internationally agreed trade rules by raising import duty on US networking hardware. But similar rises on PCs will be allowed.
The US had also complained (see Newswire, February) that the EU should not up the duty on multimedia PCs from 3.5 per cent to 14 per cent by reclassifying them in the same bracket as video equipment and televisions, but the WTO rejected the assertion in a preliminary report. Machines carrying CD-Roms or tuners will attract the higher tariffs.
The ruling that Lan hardware - adapter cards and communications kit - should not be reclassified as telecomms equipment means the duty on these items will remain at 3.5 per cent and not rise to 7.5 per cent, as they will remain in the data processing equipment category.
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