By Douglas Heffner and Richard Ferrin

For your information, on August 11, 2015 new antidumping (AD) and/or countervailing duty (CVD) petitions were filed with the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) and U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) on hot-rolled steel flat products from Australia (AD only), Brazil (AD & CVD), Japan (AD only), Korea (AD & CVD), the Netherlands (AD only), Turkey (AD & CVD), and the United Kingdom (AD only).  The petitioners are: AK Steel Corporation, ArcelorMittal USA LLC, Nucor Corporation, SSAB Enterprises LLC, Steel Dynamics Inc., and United States Steel Corporation.

Scope:

The petition proposes the following scope of investigation:

The products covered by these investigations are certain hot-rolled, steel flat products, with or without patterns in relief, and that are neither clad, plated, nor coated with metal but whether or not annealed, painted, varnished, or coated with plastics or other nonmetallic substances. The products covered include coils that have a width of 12.7 mm or greater, regardless of thickness, and regardless of the form of the coil (e.g., in successively superimposed layers, spirally oscillating, etc.). The products covered also include products not in coils (e.g., in straight lengths) of a thickness of less than 4.75 mm and a width that is 12.7 mm or greater that measures at least 10 times the thickness. The covered products described above may be rectangular, square, circular, or other shapes and include products of either rectangular or nonrectangular cross-section where such cross-section is achieved subsequent to the rolling process, i.e., products which have been “worked after rolling” (e.g., products which have been beveled or rounded at the edges).

For purposes of the width and thickness requirements referenced above:

(1) where the nominal and actual measurements vary, a product is within the scope if application of either the nominal or actual measurement would place it within the scope based on the definitions set forth above, and
(2) where the width and thickness vary for a specific product (e.g., the thickness of certain products with non-rectangular cross-section, the width of certain products with non-rectangular shape, etc.), the measurement at its greatest width or thickness applies.

Steel products included in the scope of these investigations are products in which: (1) iron predominates, by weight, over each of the other contained elements; (2) the carbon content is 2 percent or less, by weight; and (3) none of the elements listed below exceeds the quantity, by weight, respectively indicated:

  • 2.50 percent of manganese, or
  • 3.30 percent of silicon, or
  • 1.50 percent of copper, or
  • 1.50 percent of aluminum, or
  • 1.25 percent of chromium, or
  • 0.30 percent of cobalt, or
  • 0.40 percent of lead, or
  • 2.00 percent of nickel, or
  • 0.30 percent of tungsten, or
  • 0.80 percent of molybdenum, or
  • 0.10 percent of niobium, or
  • 0.30 percent of vanadium, or
  • 0.30 percent of zirconium.

Unless otherwise specifically excluded, products are included in this scope regardless of levels of boron and titanium.

For example, specifically included within the scope of these investigations are vacuum degassed, fully stabilized (commonly referred to as interstitial-free (IF)) steels, high strength low alloy (HSLA) steels, and the substrate for motor lamination steels. IF steels are recognized as low carbon steels with micro-alloying levels of elements such as titanium and/or niobium added to stabilize carbon and nitrogen elements. HSLA steels are recognized as steels with micro-alloying levels of elements such as chromium, copper, niobium, titanium, vanadium, and molybdenum. The substrate for motor lamination steels contains micro-alloying levels of elements such as silicon and aluminum.

All products that meet the written physical description, and in which the chemistry quantities do not exceed any one of the noted element levels listed above, are within the scope of these investigations unless specifically excluded. The following products are outside of and/or specifically excluded from the scope of these investigations:

Universal mill plates (i.e., hot-rolled, flat-rolled products not in coils that have been rolled on four faces or in a closed box pass, of a width exceeding 150 mm but not exceeding 1250 mm, of a thickness not less than 4.0 mm, and without patterns in relief);

  • Products that have been cold-rolled (cold-reduced) after hot-rolling;
  • Ball bearing steels, as defined in the HTSUS.
  • Tool steels, as defined in the HTSUS.
  • Silico-manganese (as defined in the HTSUS) or silicon electrical steel with a silicon level exceeding 3.30 percent.
  • USS abrasion-resistant steels (USS AR 400, USS AR 500).
  • Non-rectangular shapes, not in coils, which are the result of having been processed by cutting or stamping and which have assumed the character of articles or products classified outside chapter 72 of the HTSUS.

The merchandise subject to these investigations is classified in the HTSUS at subheadings:

7208.10.15.00, 7208.10.30.00, 7208.10.60.00, 7208.25.30.00, 7208.25.60.00, 7208.26.00.30, 7208.26.00.60, 7208.27.00.30, 7208.27.00. 60, 7208.36.00.30, 7208.36.00.60, 7208.37.00.30, 7208.37.00. 60, 7208.38.00.15, 7208.38.00.30, 7208.38.00.90, 7208.39.00. 15, 7208.39.00.30, 7208.39.00.90, 7208.40.60.30, 7208.40.60.60, 7208.53.00.00, 7208.54.00.00, 7208.90.00.00, 7210.70.30.00, 7211.14.00.30, 7211.14.00.90, 7211.19.15.00, 7211.19.20.00, 7211.19.30.00, 7211.19.45.00, 7211.19.60.00, 7211.19.75.30, 7211.19.75.60, 7211.19.75.90, and 7211.90.00.00.  Certain hot-rolled steel flat products covered by these investigations also enter under the following tariff numbers: 7225.11.00. 00, 7225.19.00.00, 7225.30.30.50, 7225.30.70.00, 7225.40.70.00, 7225.99.00.90, 7226.11.10.00, 7226.11.90.30, 7226.11.90.60, 7226.19.10.00, 7226.19.90.00, 7226.91.50.00, 7226.91.70.00, and 7226.91.80.00. Subject merchandise may also enter under 7210.90.90.00, 7212.40.10.00, 7212.40.50.00, 7212.50.00. 00, and 7226.99.01.80.

Although the HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and U.S. customs purposes, the written description of the merchandise under investigation is dispositive.

Alleged Dumping Margins:

Australia:  99.20 percent
Brazil:  21.82 percent
Japan:  19.53 to 30.90 percent
Korea:  86.96 percent to 158.93 percent
Netherlands:  55.21 percent to 173.17 percent
Turkey:  96.77 to 196.70 percent
United Kingdom:  50.63 percent to 161.75 percent

Alleged Subsidy Programs:

Petitioners allege extensive countervailable government subsidies with respect to subject imports from Brazil, Korea, and Turkey.  Please let us know if you would like further details regarding specific subsidy allegations.

Estimated Schedule of Investigation:

August 31, 2015 – DOC initiates investigation.
September 1, 2015 (estimated) – ITC holds staff conference.
September 25, 2015 – Deadline for ITC preliminary injury determination.  If negative, investigations are terminated and no AD/CVD duties are imposed.  If affirmative, DOC proceeds with its investigations.
November 4, 2015 – Deadline for DOC preliminary CVD determinations, if deadlines are NOT postponed.
January 11, 2016 – Deadline for DOC preliminary CVD determinations, if deadlines are fully postponed.
January 19, 2016 – Deadline for DOC preliminary AD determinations, if deadlines are NOT postponed.
March 8, 2016 – Deadline for DOC preliminary AD determinations, if deadlines are fully postponed.
July 21, 2016 – Deadline for DOC final AD and CVD determinations, if both the preliminary and final AD determination deadlines are fully postponed, and if the DOC aligns the deadline for the final CVD determination with the schedule for the AD determinations.
September 6, 2016 – Deadline for ITC final injury determination, assuming July 21, 2016 deadline for final AD determinations as noted above.

For further information, contact Douglas J. Heffner or Richard P. Ferrin or any other member of the Customs and International Trade Team. For a link to other Customs and Trade publications, click on the publications tab at the following link, Customs & International Trade Team.

Source: Client Alert