US Issues Preliminary Antidumping Duties on Chinese Aluminum Foil
US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced last week the affirmative preliminary determination in an antidumping duty (AD) investigation, finding that exporters of aluminum foil from China sold their product at prices that resulted in preliminary dumping margins of 96.81 percent to 162.24 percent.
The department used a non-market economy dumping methodology which uses an alternative country to calculate prices and costs of Chinese exports. These Chinese government pushed back on the finding and objected to the use of the alternative country methodology.
The Commerce Department will instruct US Customs and Border Protection to collect cash deposits from importers of aluminum foil from China based on the preliminary rates.
In 2016, imports of aluminum foil from China were valued at an estimated $389 million. The petitioner is the Aluminum Association Trade Enforcement Working Group.
Commerce is currently scheduled to announce its final AD determination on February 23, 2018.
In August, Commerce issued a preliminary countervailing duty determination on aluminum foil from China. In that case, Commerce found that Chinese exporters of aluminum foil received subsidies of 16.56 to 80.97 percent.
If Commerce makes an affirmative final determination of dumping and the US International Trade Commission (ITC) makes an affirmative final determination of injury, Commerce will issue an AD order. If Commerce makes a negative final determination of dumping or the ITC makes a negative final determination of injury, the investigation will be terminated and no order will be issued.
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 antidumping duties. Commerce currently maintains 411 AD and countervailing duty (CVD) orders which provide relief to American companies and industries impacted by unfair trade.
The Chinese government responded that the finding, and particularly the use of the alternative country approach, violated the rules of the World Trade Organization and suggested that China might haul the US before the WTO to adjudicate the issue.