Washington — The US Department of Commerce has revised antidumping and countervailing duties on some passenger and light truck tires imported from China.
The agency's final determinations, which were issued 12 March but had not been published in the Federal Register as of 15 March, are in response to a United Steelworkers union petition to Commerce last fall.
The administrative reviews covered antidumping duties levied on Chinese car/light truck tires from 27 Jan 2015, through 31 July 2016, and countervailing duties against the same tires between 1 Dec 2014, and 31 Dec 2015.
The duties on these tires were imposed in late 2014 and confirmed by the US International Trade Commission in July 2015.
In the antidumping duty review, Commerce determined that Giti Tire Global Trading Co. Pte. Ltd. and its affiliates sold tires at less than fair value during the period under investigation, but at a much lower level than previously determined. As a result, Commerce lowered Giti's antidumping rate to 1.5% from 30.74%.
The same applied to Qingdao Sentury Tire Co. Ltd. and its affiliates, the agency said, and thus lowered Sentury's dumping duty to 4.41% from 25.30%.
Against more than 60 other importers, including Kumho Tire Co. Inc. and Triangle Tyre Co. Ltd., the agency found weighted-average dumping margins of 2.96%.
All of these importers qualified for "separate rate" treatment, meaning that they could prove the absence of both de facto and de jure government control over their export activities.
Commerce found another 32 importers, including Pirelli Tyre Co. Ltd., Qingdao Nexen Tire Corp. and Toyo Tire (Zhangjiagang) Co. Ltd., did not qualify for separate rate treatment, and assessed antidumping duties of 76.46%.
In the countervailing duty review, Commerce reviewed the subsidy rates of Giti and its affiliates, as well as those of Cooper (Kunshan) Tire Co. Ltd. The agency also determined that Zhongce Rubber Group Co. Ltd. (ZC Rubber) received subsidies during the period of review.
Commerce lowered the countervailing duties levied against Giti and its affiliates to 20.68% from 36.79%, and against Cooper to 16.16% from 20.73%. ZC Rubber's went to 119.46% from 89.77%.
As a result of Commerce's actions, the combined antidumping/countervailing duties on Giti and its affiliates fell to 22.18% from 60.84%.
Other companies under review received a countervailing duty rate of 19.13%, down from 30.87% as levied in mid-2015.
The agency will direct Customs and Border Protection to collect duties of these amounts from the tire importers going forward. It will also direct CBP to issue retroactive refunds to those whose duty rates were lowered, and bill those whose duties were increased.
The new rates are for the most part much lower than those issued by Commerce in June 2015.
Antidumping duties issued at that time ranged from 14.54 to 100.77%.
For countervailing duties, the rates were 36.79% for Giti, 20.73% for Cooper, 100.37% for Shandong Yongsheng Rubber Group Co. Ltd., and 30.61% for all others.