Case T-107/04, Aluminium Silicon Mill Products

Council Regulation 2229/2003 imposed a anti-dumping duty on imports of silicon originating in Russia and as part of that imposed a 22.7% duty on silicon originating from two related Russian producers. Aluminium Silicon Mill Products imported silicon metal from these two producers and thus requested the annulment of this regulation.

The Court held that the Council had not weighed up the different injury factors, certain of which, however, it admitted were favourable.

The Court furthermore pointed out that the development of the Community industry’s market share constituted a significant factor for an assessment of the existence of material injury to that industry.

By describing that factor as having greatly decreased, the Council not only presented a picture of the development of that factor that was contrary to the facts but necessarily attributed to that element some not inconsiderable importance in its conclusion relating to the existence of material injury suffered by the Community industry.

The CFI found that it was on a manifestly incorrect premiss that the Council based its finding of the existence of that injury.

The Court reiterated that the Community institutions enjoy wide discretion in determining injury in anti-dumping proceedings, since this involves the assessment of complex economic matters.

Judicial review must be restricted to verifying whether the procedural rules have been complied with, whether the facts on which the contested choice was based were accurate or whether there had been a manifest error of assessment or a misuse of powers (see e.g. Case T-210/95 - EFMA v Council [1999]).

Nevertheless, in determining injury, the Council and the Commission were under an obligation to consider whether the injury on which they intended to base their conclusions actually derived from dumped imports and must disregard any injury deriving from other factors, particularly from the conduct of Community producers themselves. Such causal link could not be established.

The Council had also committed manifest errors of assessment both as regards the effect of the contraction in demand and as regards the expansion of market share and sales volume.

The Court concluded that even if the Community industry did suffer the material injury claimed by the Council, the view must be taken that the manifest errors of assessment committed by the Council in the contested regulation in the analysis of causal link constituted an infringement of the basic regulation.

Accordingly the contested regulation must be annulled in so far as it concerned the applicant, without there being any need to consider the other pleas in law and arguments raised by the applicant.

Text of Judgment