Today, the U.S. Department of Commerce announced five affirmative final antidumping duty (AD) and countervailing duty (CVD) circumvention determinations involving steel products that are produced in Korea and Taiwan, shipped to Vietnam for minor processing, and then exported to the United States as corrosion-resistant steel products (CORE) and cold-rolled steel (CRS) – in circumvention of existing orders.
As a result of today’s determinations, Commerce will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to continue to collect AD and CVD cash deposits on imports of CORE and CRS produced in Vietnam using Korean- or Taiwanese-origin substrate. These duties apply to any unliquidated entries since August 2, 2018, the date on which Commerce initiated these circumvention inquiries.
The applicable cash deposit rates will be as high as 456.23 percent, depending on the origin of the substrate and the type of steel product exported to the United States.
U.S. law provides that Commerce may find circumvention of AD/CVD orders when merchandise subject to an existing order is completed or assembled in a third country prior to importation into the United States.
Shipments of CORE from Vietnam to the United States increased from $22 million (in the 40-month period of September 2012 until preliminary duties imposed on South Korean and Taiwanese products in December 2015) to $940 million (40-month period from imposition of preliminary duties in January 2016 until April 2019), which is an increase of 4,096 percent. Additionally, shipments of CRS from Vietnam to the United States increased from $49 million (in the 38-month period of January 2013 until preliminary duties imposed on South Korean and Taiwanese products in February 2016) to $498 million (38-month period from imposition of preliminary duties in March 2016 until April 2019), which is an increase of 922 percent.
These inquiries were conducted pursuant to requests from U.S. domestic producers of CORE and CRS, including Steel Dynamics, Inc. (IN), California Steel Industries (CA), AK Steel Corporation (OH), ArcelorMittal USA LLC (IN), Nucor Corporation (NC), and United States Steel Corporation (PA).
The strict enforcement of U.S. trade law is a primary focus of the Trump Administration. To date, the Administration has issued 35 preliminary or final affirmative determinations in anti-circumvention inquiries – a 192 percent increase from the number of such determinations made during the comparable period in the previous administration.
The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Enforcement and Compliance unit within the International Trade Administration is responsible for vigorously enforcing U.S. trade law and does so through an impartial, transparent process that abides by international rules and is based on factual evidence provided on the record.