New Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Investigation Initiated Covering Aluminum Extrusions from 15 Countries
On October 4, 2023, A coalition of 14 U.S. aluminum extrusion producers and labor unions filed petitions before the Department of Commerce, International Trade Administration (Commerce) and the International Trade Commission (ITC) seeking to impose antidumping (AD) and countervailing duties (CVD) on aluminum extrusions produced in 15 countries and exported to the U.S.
On October 25, 2023, Commerce issued its Initiation of Less-Than-Fair-Value Investigations notice in response to the petitions, which was published in the Federal Register on October 31, 2023. See:
The Periods of Investigation (POI), for all countries except China and Vietnam, will be October 1, 2022, through September 30, 2023. For China and Vietnam, as they are non-market economies (NMEs), the POI is April 1, 2023, through September 30, 2023.
The AD petitions allege claims of less than normal value sales of aluminum extrusions from Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, India, Indonesia, Italy, Malaysia, Mexico, the People’s Republic of China (“China”), South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and Vietnam. The CVD petition further alleges that aluminum extrusions from China, Indonesia, Mexico and Turkey are being unfairly subsidized.
Many importers are familiar with existing AD / CVD orders covering imports of aluminum extrusions from China (AD case no. A-570-967 and CVD case no. C-570-968); however, the current petitions greatly expand the number of countries targeted for AD and CVD allegations, and significantly expand the scope of the previous AD / CVD orders.
The expanded scope covers certain types of aluminum alloys and chemistries previously excluded under the original cases, as well as certain merchandise formerly covered under various express exclusions. In addition, the petitions seek to cover a laundry list of products that had been determined to be out-of-scope through formal scope ruling decisions.
The scope would now also expressly cover aluminum extrusions that have been further processed in a third country, including, but not limited to, finishing and fabrication processes described in the scope, assembly (whether with other aluminum extrusion components or with non-aluminum extrusion components), or any other processing that would not otherwise remove the merchandise from the scope if performed in the country of manufacture of the in-scope product.
The Petitioners estimate dumping margins for the subject merchandise at 376% for China, 76 to 82% for Mexico, 60 to 67% for Taiwan, 41% for Vietnam and a range of 165% to 28% for the balance of the remaining 11 countries. Estimated CVD rates were not specified.
The anticipated investigation timeline is:
Preliminary Determination CVD – December 28, 2023 (unless extended)
Final CVD Determination CVD – March 12, 2024 (unless extended)
Preliminary Determination AD – March 12, 2024 (unless extended)
Final Determination AD – May 26, 2024 (unless extended)
These are the dates where if affirmative determinations are made both by Commerce and the ITC, AD and CVD duties will need to be deposited for imports of affected extrusions. In the event of an affirmative determination of critical circumstances, which can be alleged at almost any time in the investigation should a “surge” of imports of the subject merchandise be alleged during the investigation, AD / CVD duties can be retroactively assessed 90 days prior to the respective preliminary determination dates.
The Notice of Initiation provides that Commerce will consider all scope comments received and, if necessary, will consult with interested parties prior to the issuance of the preliminary determinations. If scope comments include factual information, all such factual information should be limited to public information. Scope comments are due by 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time (ET) on November 13, 2023, and any rebuttal comments, must be filed by 5:00 p.m. ET on November 24, 2023. All submissions to Commerce must be filed electronically using Enforcement and Compliance’s Antidumping Duty and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (ACCESS), unless an exception applies.
The Notice of Initiation also provided instructions for NME foreign exporters and producers to apply for separate rate status, which can result in a lower assessed AD rate. The specific requirements for submitting a separate rate application in an NME investigation are available on Commerce’s website at https://access.trade.gov/Resources/nme/nme-sep-rate.html. The separate rate application will be due 30 days after October 31, 2023 Notice of Initiation publication date.
The AD and CVD orders already in place against Chinese extrusions have proven to be very contentious from a litigation standpoint and have resulted in one of the highest numbers of scope ruling requests ever. Many companies have changed their source of supply to third countries, and scores of companies have found themselves embroiled in CBP enforcement actions, sometimes with devastating financial consequences due to the broad scope coverage and generally high AD / CVD rates.
The new petition clearly seeks to close off alternate third country sourcing avenues and eliminate a substantial number of exclusions provided under the original orders or those obtained through favorable scope ruling decisions. It is imperative that importers of aluminum extrusions or products with aluminum extrusions as component parts understand the new coverage and follow the developments of the new investigation closely in order to assess potential financial impacts and to be prepared to modify future channels of supply if necessary.