Vietnam makes preliminary ruling on anti-dumping duties for sorbitol originating from China, India and Indonesia 08-14-2021

On July 6, 2021, the Ministry of Industry and Trade in Vietnam announced an affirmative preliminary anti-dumping duty ruling on sorbitol imported from China, India, and Indonesia. This decision came after an anti-dumping investigation launched on December 11, 2020 by the Ministry of Industry and Trade of Vietnam sorbitol imported from China, India, and Indonesia.

According to the preliminary ruling, Vietnam will apply provisional anti-dumping duties on the products subject to the investigation at a rate in the range 39.635%-68.50%. The tax rate of Shandong Tianli Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. and Shandong Lianmeng International Trade Co., Ltd. is 45.15%, and the tax rate of other Chinese producers is 68.50%.

The tax rates of two Indonesian producers, PT Sorini Argo Asia Corporindo and PT Sorini Towa Berlian Corporindo, are 39.63% and 56.46% respectively. Other Indonesian producers are taxed 57.55%. Lastly, the tax rate of Indian producers is 52.75%. The final resolution will be expected in September 2021. The products subject to investigation are classified under the HS codes 2905.44.00 and 3824.60.00.

High demand in food and global medical industries for sorbitol

Sorbitol, a type of carbohydrate and also a polyol, naturally exists in fruits such as apples, apricots, dates, peaches, plums, figs, and berries. It can also be extracted from corn syrup. Sorbitol is usually used as a sweetener and a food thickener, and it also helps with digestion and oral health.

Sorbitol is commonly used in food and drinks as a low-calorie replacement of traditional sugar. The total caloric density of sorbitol is only two thirds that of traditional sugar, and the sweet taste can reach about 60% of that of traditional sugar. Sorbitol is often used in food for diabetics, because it has only a small effect on blood sugar level in humans.

In addition, compared to traditional sugar and other sugar alcohols, sorbitol poses a reduced risk for tooth decay, and thus it is often used as sweetener for sugar free chewing gum and liquid medicine. Sorbitol has a very low risk of diarrhea as a side effect, and it is recognized and considered to be safe for many trustful medical and health institutions around the worlds, such as the FDA, the Food and Agriculture Organization and JECFA.

The main consumer markets for sorbitol are the US, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region. With the economic development of these areas, the consumption of sorbitol is also seeing a continuous increase. In 2017, the global market value of sorbitol was USD 24.73 billion. With the developing use of sorbitol in some specific areas such as food, medicine, and household and personal care, the demand for sorbitol will continue to increase, and its value is expected to increase to USD 26.1 billion in 2021, a 5.6% increase compared to 2017.

Increased future demand expected for crystal sorbitol

Crystal sorbitol is mainly used in food production and medicine, and the price of crystal sorbitol is also relatively high due to its advanced production technology and complicated manufacturing technique. Today, liquid sorbitol accounts for approximately 90% of the whole sorbitol market. Due to its simple technology, low cost, and comparatively low price, it is not only used in toothpastes, washing products, cosmetics, and other household and personal care products, but also in aquatic products, food processing industrial products, vitamin C products, and chemical alcohol materials. However, with the gradual increase in the demand in the food and medical industry, crystal sorbitol is expected to take up a larger proportion of the whole sorbitol market in the future.

For more information, you can find at CCM Sorbitol China Monthly Newsletter and CCM Sweetener China Monthly Newsletter.

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