Panel backs US Commerce Department probe into pipe imports

The US International Trade Commission voted 5 March to continue Commerce Department investigations into large-diameter welded pipe from a number of countries, including China and Canada.­

Mid-February the Commerce Department announced it was looking into allegations of dumping of welded pipe made by a number of US companies. Pipes over 16 inches (406.4mm) are covered by the investigation.

A statement from the commission reads: “The United States International Trade Commission (USITC) today determined that there is a reasonable indication that a US industry is materially injured or threatened with material injury by reason of imports of large diameter welded pipe from Canada, China, Greece, India, Korea, and Turkey that are allegedly sold in the United States at less than fair value and subsidized by the governments of China, India, Korea, and Turkey.”

The Department’s investigations are contingent on the Commission concluding that the sale of the dumped goods are ‘materially’ damaging American industry. This determination by the Commission will see the antidumping and countervailing investigations continue.

The preliminary countervailing determination from the Department is expected by April 16 and its preliminary antidumping determination by June 29. If the Department finds that the pipes are being sold below fair market price or receiving unfair government support, then it will instruct border patrol to collect cash deposits from all companies importing those pipes.

Final determinations are expected in early July and early September for the countervailing and antidumping investigations respectively. If these find unfair market practices, then relevant duties will be imposed on those imports.

The Commission’s full report will be available from 2 April here.

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