European Union authorities opened an investigation yesterday (Aug. 8) into whether cheap recordable CD imports from China, Malaysia and Hong Kong are being unfairly “dumped” on the European market

European Union authorities opened an investigation yesterday (Aug. 8) into whether cheap recordable CD imports from China, Malaysia and Hong Kong are being unfairly “dumped” on the European market.

The European Commission -- the EU's executive -- said the probe would look at whether the imported goods were below the sales price in their domestic market, or below the cost of production. If the probe concludes that they were sold too cheaply, then the EU can set hefty import duties to redress the issue.

The investigation was prompted by a complaint from the Committee of CD-R manufacturers (CECMA), which represents more than 60% of EU production of CD-Rs.

"Dumping is often seen to relate to any cheap or below-cost imports, but the reality is more complicated," a Commission official said. "If left unchallenged, dumping gives the outside exporters an unfair competitive advantage which could hurt the EU industry."

However, anti-dumping measures are set only after the nine-month probe looks at the broader EU interest, including that of producers, importers, users and consumers.

The investigation comes just four days after the Commission opened a separate study into recordable DVD imports from mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan.