SEOUL-- South Korea's trade commission said Thursday it will call on the government to levy anti-dumping duties on coated printing paper from Japan, China and Finland to protect the local industry from being hurt by cheap imports.

The Korean Trade Commission (KTC) under the trade ministry launched the anti-dumping investigation in June at the request of Hansol Paper, Hankuk Paper and Hongwon Paper, which claimed the cheap imported goods led to company shutdowns and job cuts.

"There is enough evidence to determine that the coated printing paper has caused or could cause actual damage to the local industry making the same products," the KTC said in a statement. "The trade commission will conduct on-site inspections and hear from stakeholders before making a final ruling."

The commission suggested a 56.3 percent anti-dumping duty on Japanese products, the highest of the three nations, as Japanese suppliers didn't submit related data. It proposed 9-12.1 percent duties on Chinese goods and 4.6-10.5 percent tariffs on Finnish paper.

The finance ministry will decide on the levels of duty within one month of the trade commission's submission of its preliminary investigation results. A final ruling is expected in March.

The local market for the printing paper used in magazines, textbooks, educational materials and commercial flyers was valued at 500 billion won (US$433 million) for last year. Japan, China and Finland held a combined 25 percent of the domestic market.

Source: Yonhap News Agency