The U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) announced this week that it had launched anti-dumping and countervailing duty investigations related to imports of fabricated structural steel from Canada, Mexico and China.
The investigation comes on the heels of a petition filed by the Chicago-based American Institute of Steel Construction Full Member Subgroup.
The total value of imports of fabricated structural steel from the three countries in 2017 is approximately $1.9 billion, according to the DOC. By country, the values are estimated at $658.3 million for Canada, $841.7 million for China and $406.6 million for Mexico.
By quantity, the U.S. imported 213,279 tons of fabricated structural steel from Canada during the January-October 2018 period, up 10.3% from 193,412 tons for the same period in 2017. Mexico’s imports for the period were also up in 2018, at 265,700 tons, up 43.1% from 185,700 tons for the same period in 2017.
Import levels from China actually dipped in 2018, hitting 419,948 tons during the January-October 2018 period, down 2.5% from 430,899 tons in the same period in 2017.
According to the DOC, the alleged dumping margins for the three countries are:
- 30.41% for Canada
- 222.35% for China
- 30.58% for Mexico
Meanwhile, on the countervailing duty side, the DOC said there are 44 alleged subsidy programs for Canada, including “tax programs, grant programs, loan programs, export insurance programs, and equity programs.” For China, that number is 26, which include “tax programs, grant programs, debt restructuring programs, export subsidy programs, as well as the provision of goods and services for less than adequate remuneration.” Lastly, 19 subsidy programs are alleged for Mexico, including “grant programs, tax programs, export programs, and loan programs.”
Next, the International Trade Commission will make a preliminary determination by March 21. If it rules in the affirmative — that is, that the imports are injurious to U.S. industry and its workforce — then the DOC will continue its investigations. The DOC would then be scheduled to make its preliminary determinations in the countervailing duty and anti-dumping investigations by May 1 and July 15, respectively.