Washington – Although the Commerce Department has stamped its approval on investigations into the alleged dumping of passenger and light truck (P/LT) tires from South Korea, Thailand, Vietnam and Taiwan, resolving the issue could take until March 2021 until a final determination is reached.
According to the timetable released by the Commerce Department, the antidumping (AD) and countervailing (CVD) duty investigations into these P/LT tire imports need to go through five more steps until final resolution.
The steps are: preliminary determinations by the International Trade Commission; preliminary determinations by Commerce; final determinations by Commerce; final determinations by the ITC; and issuance of orders.
The timelines for the CVD and AD investigations are:
• ITC preliminary determinations — 17 July (for both);
• DOC preliminary determinations — 26 Aug and 9 Nov;
• DOC final determination — 9 Nov 2020, and 25 Jan 2021;
• ITC final determination — 24 Dec 2020, and 11 March 2021; and
• Issuance or orders — 31 Dec 2020, and 18 March 2021.
During Commerce's investigations, the ITC will conduct its own investigations into whether the US industry and its workforce are being injured by such imports, Commerce said.
The ITC will make its preliminary determinations by 17 July. If the ITC determines preliminarily that there is "reasonable indication" of material injury or threat of material injury, then Commerce's investigations will continue, with the preliminary CVD determination scheduled for 26 Aug, and preliminary AD determinations scheduled for 9 Nov, unless these deadlines are extended.
If Commerce determines preliminarily that dumping and/or unfair subsidisation is occurring, it will instruct US Customs and Border Protection to start collecting cash deposits from all US companies importing P/LT tires from South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam, as appropriate.
Final determinations by Commerce in these cases are scheduled for 9 Nov, for the CVD investigation, and 25 Jan 2021, for the AD investigation, but these dates may be extended, Commerce said.
If Commerce finds that products are not being dumped or unfairly subsidised, or the ITC finds in a final determination there is no injury to the US industry, then the investigations will be terminated and no duties will be applied.
AD and CVD laws provide US businesses and workers with an internationally accepted mechanism to seek relief from the alleged harmful effects of unfair pricing and unfair subsidisation of imports into the US There are 529 AD and CVD orders in place as of late June, Commerce said.
Foreign companies that price their products in the US market below the cost of production or below prices in their home markets are subject to AD duties.
Foreign companies that receive financial assistance from foreign governments that benefits those companies' production of goods, and is limited to specific enterprises or industries or is contingent either upon export performance or upon the use of domestic goods over imported goods, are subject to CVD duties.
Commerce's Enforcement and Compliance unit within the International Trade Administration is responsible for enforcing US trade laws and does so through an "impartial, transparent process" that abides by international rules and is based on factual evidence provided on the record.
The strict enforcement of US trade law is a primary focus of the Trump administration, Commerce said. Since the beginning of the current administration, Commerce has initiated 262 AD and CVD investigations.