Steel Mills

Cold Rolled Antidumping trade suits filed against 8 Countries

Written by John Packard

U.S. Steel and four other domestic steel mills filed antidumping suits on cold rolled steel against 8 countries. The following information was released to the steel community this morning (Tuesday, July 28th). In an email last night, USS incorrectly named SSAB as one of the petitioners in the CR suit. SSAB did respond to our request for confirmation and advised SMU that there were not part of this antidumping petition:
(Washington, D.C.) (July 28, 2015) – Five major U.S. steel producers – AK Steel Corporation, ArcelorMittal USA LLC, Nucor Corporation, Steel Dynamics, Inc., and United States Steel Corporation – today filed petitions charging that unfairly-traded imports of certain cold-rolled steel flat products from Brazil, China, India, Japan, South Korea, Netherlands, Russia and the United Kingdom are causing material injury to the domestic industry.  The petitions allege that producers in each of the eight countries are dumping cold-rolled steel in the U.S. market at substantial margins:

Country and Dumping Margins Alleged

Brazil 50.07 – 59.74 percent
China 265.98 percent
India 42.28 percent
Japan 82.58 percent        
South Korea 93.32 – 176.13 percent
Netherlands 47.36 – 136.46 percent
Russia 69.12 – 320.45 percent
United Kingdom 47.64 – 84.34 percent

The petitions also allege that the foreign producers in Brazil, China, India, South Korea, and Russia benefit from numerous countervailable subsidies provided by their governments. The petitions identify 28 different subsidy programs in Brazil, 46 subsidy programs in China, 47 subsidy programs in India, ¬¬¬45 subsidy programs in South Korea, and 14 subsidy programs in Russia.

The petitions were filed concurrently with the United States Department of Commerce (“Commerce Department”) and the United States International Trade Commission (“USITC”).  The filing is in response to large and increasing volumes of low-priced imports of cold-rolled steel from the subject countries since 2012 that have injured U.S. producers.  Imports of cold-rolled steel from the eight countries targeted by this case increased by approximately 120 percent from 2012 to 2014, rising from 798,000 tons to 1.75 million tons.  Subject imports increased by a further 44 percent between January-May 2014 and January-May 2015.  Subject imports doubled their share of the U.S. market from 2012 to 2014, while the domestic industry’s share of the U.S. market declined.  

The petitions allege that subject imports were able to penetrate the U.S. market and capture an increasing share of the U.S. market by significantly undercutting U.S. producers’ prices.  As a result of the increasing volumes of low-priced imports, U.S. producers have suffered significant declines in production, shipments, prices, and profits.  The foreign producers in the countries covered by the petitions have massive capacity to produce cold-rolled steel and have been exporting large and increasing volumes of unfairly low-priced and subsidized cold-rolled steel to the United States.  The price declines and market share reductions that U.S. producers have suffered are likely to continue if duties are not imposed to level the playing field.

“A surge of dumped and subsidized imports of cold-rolled steel has caused severe injury to the U.S. industry with no end in sight,” according to counsel for the domestic petitioners.  “In the absence of trade relief, subject imports will continue pouring into this market, causing substantial harm to U.S. mills and their workers.”  


Antidumping and Countervailing Duties:  Antidumping duties are intended to offset the amount by which a product is sold at less than fair value, or “dumped,” in the United States.  The margin of dumping is calculated by the Commerce Department.  Estimated duties in the amount of the dumping are collected from importers at the time of importation.  Countervailing duties are intended to offset unfair subsidies that are provided by foreign governments and benefit the production of a particular good.  The USITC, an independent agency, will determine whether the domestic industry is materially injured or threatened with material injury by reason of the unfairly traded imports.

Next Steps:   The Commerce Department will determine whether to initiate the antidumping and countervailing duty investigations within 20 days of today’s filing of the petitions, and the USITC will reach a preliminary determination of material injury or threat of material injury within 45 days of today’s filing.  The entire investigative process will take approximately one year, with final determinations of dumping, subsidization, and injury likely occurring in the summer of 2016.

Product Description:  The products covered by these petitions are certain cold-rolled (cold-reduced), flat-rolled steel products, whether or not in coils and regardless of thickness, that are not clad, plated, or coated with metal.  The subject products include cold-rolled steel that is annealed, painted, varnished, or coated with plastics or other non-metallic substances.  Cold-rolled steel is primarily used in the production appliances, automotive products, containers, and construction products, and a significant portion of cold-rolled steel produced in the United States is used for further processing into metallic-coated steels.   

Petitioning companies:  The petitioning companies and their law firms are AK Steel Corporation (represented by King & Spalding LLP), ArcelorMittal USA LLC (represented by Kelley Drye & Warren LLP), Nucor Corporation (represented by Wiley Rein LLP), Steel Dynamics, Inc. (represented by Schagrin Associates) and United States Steel Corporation (represented by Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP).

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