Commerce dents Chinese aluminum foil with duties

Source: American Shipper news

The International Trade Commission must now make final determinations on the Commerce Department’s findings that Chinese producers of aluminum foil are receiving unfair subsidies and dumping the product in the U.S. market.
By Chris Gillis |Wednesday, February 28, 2018
The U.S. Commerce Department will begin assessing antidumping and countervailing duties on imports of Chinese-made aluminum foil. Dumping occurs when a foreign company sells a product in the U.S. market at less than fair value, while countervailable subsidies are given by foreign governments to companies based on their export performance and use of domestic inputs over imports for their production.

In its antidumping investigation, Commerce found that Jiangsu Dingsheng New Materials Joint-Stock Co., Ltd./Hangzhou Teemful Aluminum Co., Ltd./Hangzhou Five Star Aluminum Co., Ltd./Dingsheng Aluminum Industries (Hong Kong) Trading Co. Ltd./Hangzhou Dingsheng Import & Export Co., Ltd./Walson (HK) Trading Co. Ltd./Inner Mongolia Liansheng New Energy Material Joint-Stock Co. Ltd. (collectively Dingsheng), and Jiangsu Zhongji Lamination Materials Stock Co. Ltd./Jiangsu Huafeng Aluminum Industry Co. Ltd. (collectively Zhongji) were dumping at margins of 106.09 percent and 48.64 percent, respectively.

Commerce also said 14 other Chinese companies received a dumping rate of 89.54 percent, while all other aluminum foil producers and exporters in the country were designated a dumping margin of 106.09 percent.

In its countervailing duty investigation, Commerce has calculated subsidy rates of 19.98 percent for Dingsheng Aluminum Industries (Hong Kong) Trading Co. Ltd; 17.14 percent for Jiangsu Zhongji Lamination Materials Co. Ltd.; 80.97 percent for Loften Aluminum (Hong Kong) Ltd.; and 80.97 percent for both Manakin Industries and Suzhou Manakin Aluminum Processing Technology Co. Ltd.  All other Chinese producers and exporters of aluminum foil were assessed a subsidy rate of 18.56 percent.

The aluminum foil subject to Commerce’s investigations includes imports of Chinese aluminum foil that is 0.2 mm or less in thickness (less than 0.0078 inches) in reels weighing more than 25 pounds and that is not backed, etched for use in capacitors, or cut to shape. This foil is commonly used for consumer and industrial applications, such as household foil, flexible and semi-rigid cookware, product packaging, automotive and HVAC heat exchangers, among other common uses.

In 2016, Commerce estimated that imports of aluminum foil from China were valued at $389 million. The Aluminum Association Trade Enforcement Working Group filed its petition for the investigations in March 2017, the first of their kind requested by the association in its 85-year history.

   “The Aluminum Association and its foil-producing members are extremely pleased with the Commerce Department’s final determinations that aluminum foil from China is being sold unfairly in the United States,” said Heidi Brock, president and CEO of the Aluminum Association, in a statement.
“U.S. aluminum foil producers are among the most competitive producers in the world, but they cannot compete against products that are sold at unfairly low prices and subsidized by the government of China,” she added.

Meanwhile, the International Trade Commission (ITC) is scheduled to make its final determinations by April 12. If the ITC makes affirmative final determinations that Chinese aluminum foil imports harm U.S. industry, Commerce will issue antidumping and countervailing duty orders. If the ITC makes negative determinations of injury, the investigations will end.

Commerce said these antidumping and countervailing duty investigations have no bearing on the 232 report on aluminum that is under consideration by President Trump.

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