Trade Remedy Enforcement Efforts Expand with Self-Initiated AD/CV Investigations of Aluminum
Utilizing a rarely invoked statutory authority, the Trump administration has expanded its efforts to enforce U.S. trade remedy laws by self-initiating antidumping and countervailing duty investigations of common alloy aluminum sheet from China. The Department of Commerce is alleging dumping margins as high as 59.72 percent and cash deposit requirements could be imposed as early as February. Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg will conduct a free webinar Dec. 4 to review these investigations and the potential for others.
There are shorter-than-normal deadlines associated with the aluminum investigations, including a Dec. 13 deadline for foreign producers to submit quantity and value information and a Dec. 18 deadline to submit comments on product coverage. Exports from foreign producers that do not meet the Dec. 13 deadline would be subject to the highest duty rates with little chance of relief. Affected companies that wish to protect their interests should therefore contact trade counsel as soon as possible.
AD/CV investigations are generally initiated based on petitions from affected industries, but the DOC may also self-initiate if it believes a formal investigation is warranted. The DOC states that in this case it has information warranting an investigation into whether (1) the U.S. price of common alloy sheet from China may be less than the normal value of such or similar goods, (2) imports of such goods may be benefitting from countervailable subsidies, and (3) imports of such goods may be materially injuring, or threatening material injury to, the domestic industry producing common alloy sheet in the U.S. For example, the DOC states, imports from China have been significant since 2005, have increased rapidly in the last three years, and could increase further based on the “systemic and significant over-capacity in the Chinese aluminum industry.”
The DOC states that while it expects future AD/CV investigations to “normally proceed” based on industry-filed petitions, it will self-initiate additional investigations where warranted “to facilitate the application of the appropriate trade remedy for U.S. industries.” In determining whether to take such actions the DOC may evaluate similar factors as those set forth above for aluminum sheet.