US issues preliminary ruling on Vietnam steel

HANOI (Viet Nam News/ANN) - The US Department of Commerce said corrosion-resistant steel and cold-steel imported from Vietnam produced from substrate originating in China were circumventing existing antidumping and countervailing duty orders on products imported from China.

 The US Department of Commerce (DOC) has announced preliminary affirmative rulings on corrosion-resistant steel (CORE) and certain cold-rolled steel flat products imported from Vietnam and produced from substrate originating in China.

Accordingly, cash deposits would be collected on imports of CORE and cold-rolled steel produced in Vietnam using Chinese-origin substrate.

In a release on its website on Tuesday, DOE said CORE and cold-steel imported from Vietnam produced from substrate originating in China were circumventing existing antidumping and countervailing duty orders on products imported from China.

The US ruling provided that DOC might find circumvention of antidumping/countervailing duty orders when merchandise that was the same class or kind as merchandise subject to existing orders is completed or assembled in a third country prior to importation into the United States.

The Customs and Border Protection will collect antidumping and countervailing duty cash deposits on imports of CORE produced in Vietnam using Chinese-origin substrate at rates of 199.43 per cent and 39.05 per cent, respectively.

The rates on imports of cold-rolled steel produced in Vietnam using Chinese-origin subtrate are 265.79 per cent and 256.44 per cent, respectively.

These cash deposit rates were previously established in investigations on cold-rolled steel and CORE from China.

Duties will apply to all shipments entering the United States on or after November 4, 2016, the date the circumvention inquiries were initiated, that remain unliquidated.

Importers and exporters of Vietnamese merchandise that is produced from substrate originating in Vietnam or a third-country have the option of seeking an exemption from cash deposits by certifying that the substrate originated outside of China, according to the release.

DOC’s statistics showed that shipments of CORE from Vietnam to the Unisted Stat increased from US$2 million to $80 million after preliminary duties were imposed on Chinese products in 2015.

Likewise, shipments of cold-rolled steel from Vietnam to the United States increased from $9 million to $215 million after preliminary duties were imposed on Chinese products in 2015.

DOC is currently scheduled to announce its final determinations in these inquiries on February 16, 2018.

The case was initiated in September when US steel producers, including ArcelorMittal USA, Nucor Corp., AK Steel Holdings Corp. and Steel Corp, filed lawsuits in which they claimed Chinese steel producers shipped products via Vietnam to evade tariffs.

In November, the European Union’s anti-fraud office said it found Chinese steel was shipped through Vietnam to evade the bloc’s tariffs.

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