Washington – The US International Trade Commission (ITC) has reversed its original opinion on truck and bus tires from China, voting 3-2 on 30 Jan that these imports had caused ‘material injury’ to its tire industry.
The findings, filed with the US Court of International Trade (CIT), reverse the ITC’s original ‘negative’ determination on Chinese truck and bus tires in February 2017.
The United Steelworkers (USW) union — which had sought countervailing and anti-dumping duties against Chinese truck and bus tire importers — subsequently filed a complaint with the CIT.
USW argued that the commission's ‘negative’ adverse-price-effects determination and its ‘negative’ threat-determination were "not supported by substantial evidence."
In the latest filing with the CIT, the ITC said it now found that Chinese imports had "a significant adverse impact" on the US truck and bus tire industry.
"The subject tires undersold the domestic product by significant and increasing margins-of-underselling and depressed prices," the commission said in the court document.
"Tier and brand premiums cannot explain price underselling in instances in which the subject and Chinese tires overlap," the ITC said.
Both domestic and Chinese tires, it added, “competed directly and to a significant degree in Tiers 2 and 3, the tiers which accounted for a large portion of total shipments."
ITC chairman David Johanson and commissioner Meredith Broadbent dissented: continuing to find that the domestic tire industry did not face material injury because of Chinese imports.
USW international secretary-treasurer Stan Johnson praised the new ITC determination.
"The ITC finally acknowledged… that illegally subsidised bus and truck tires coming to our country from China hurt domestic manufacturing and good-paying jobs," Johnson said in a statement.
The retread industry, which faces fierce competition from imports of new Chinese tires, welcomed the new ITC determination.
"This is good news for the retread industry, but we still have a ways to go before a final determination is made," the Tire Retread & Repair Information Bureau said in a press release.
Interested parties will have the opportunity to comment on the redetermination and reply to those comments.
If the CIT upholds the ITC's new determination, Commerce will issue orders to Customs and Border Protection to collect countervailing and anti-dumping duties against Chinese truck and bus tire imports.
In January 2017, Commerce issued final countervailing duty levels of: 38.61% against Double Coin Holdings Ltd; 65.48% against Guizhou Tire Co. Ltd; and 52.04% against Prinx Changshan (Shandong) Tire Co. Ltd and all other importers.
In anti-dumping duties, Commerce found margins of 9% against Prinx Chengshan and 22.57% against Double Coin, Guizhou and all others.
According to Commerce data, the average declared customs value of a Chinese truck/bus tire was $109.59, 28.4% below the average for all imports.