China has appealed a ruling by the World Trade Organisation, claiming the United States flouted international trade rules when it imposed trade barriers on car tyres imported from China, a WTO spokesman has said.

A legal panel at the WTO last year ruled that US tariffs of up to 35% on Chinese car tyres were legal under world trade rules, Reuters noted.

The United States has until 30 May to lodge a counter appeal over its rights to tax Chinese tyres.

The WTO's finding last December that US tariffs against China were legal gave a victory not only to the Obama administration but also to the United Steelworkers union that had complained surging imports of Chinese tyres were hurting US producers.

The WTO's appellate body generally takes three months to reach a decision on whether to uphold or reject all or part of a previous WTO ruling, Reuters said.