While the price of memory continues to reach new heights, a decision by EU commissioners this week is likely to mean more rises throughout this spring.
An EU agreement on anti-dumping tariffs dating back to 1993 will expire on the 10 March and according to a senior official at the DTI, member countries are likely to ask for a renewal of the tariffs on semiconductors.
He said: ?The Commissioners are reviewing the measures and we will ask them to look at the tariffs this week.?
Europe has its own Dram manufacturing capability with Siemens being the leading supplier. At present, all Japanese manufacturers have to pay a 60 per cent tariff unless they are exempted. The exemptions apply if the Japanese companies make a formal undertaking to reprice their good at a fair market level and receive a licence from the EU before importing the goods.
Korean companies have an anti-dumping tariff of 24.7 per cent unless they are exempted, and the tariffs also cover products made by Motorola and Hitachi in Malaysia. At present, Taiwanese manufacturers of memory products are not covered by the anti-dumping actions.
The situation will be complicated by the fact that in March most of the major Dram manufacturers are meeting to agree a reference price.
Meanwhile, the price of memory continues to soar. According to John Bern, joint managing director of Vanguard, which represents the interests of a Taiwanese Dram manufacturer here in the UK, both 8Mb and 16Mb modules have soared in price.
?Last week an 8Mb EDO module was $28 and today it?s $31,? he said. ?For 16Mb modules, the price was $60 and has now risen to $70.?
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