Trade Cases

Commerce Reviews AD Duties on Japanese HRC

Written by Michael Cowden

The U.S. Commerce Department has preliminarily increased anti-dumping margins on several major Japanese hot-rolled coil suppliers.

Commerce calculated preliminary anti-dumping margins of 11.70% for Nippon Steel, Japan’s largest steelmaker, and 6.8% for Tokyo Steel Manufacturing.

JapanNippon Steel and Tokyo Steel were the mandatory respondents in the case. But a litany of Japanese steel suppliers–including JFE Steel Corp., Japan’s second largest steelmaker–were hit with preliminary anti-dumping margins of 10.95%, according to the results of an administrative review signed by Christian Marsh, the acting assistant secretary of the Commerce Department’s Enforcement and Compliance division.

The administrative review was initiated on Dec. 11, 2019. It covers a review period stretching from Oct. 1, 2018, through Sept. 30, 2019.

Japanese steelmakers, including Nippon and JFE, were in 2016 hit with anti-dumping duties following a trade petition filed the prior year against hot-rolled coil imports from seven nations. JFE was initially slapped with anti-dumping duties of 7.51%, Nippon with a margin of 4.99%, and all other Japanese hot-rolled coil suppliers with an anti-dumping margin of 5.58%.

The review comes during a period when Steel Market Update’s U.S. hot-rolled coil price is at its highest point ever, something that–combined with extended lead times and limited spot availability at domestic mills—could lead to increased interest in imports.

Japan has been an important supplier to the West Coast, where one local mill, California Steel Industries (CSI), is already taking orders for May–a lead time of more than nine weeks.

Still, hot-rolled coil imports from the East Asian nation have fallen dramatically in recent months.

Japan shipped only 2,328.6 metric tonnes of hot-rolled coil to the U.S. in January 2021, the last full month for which import figures are available. That figure is down 84% from 14,154.9 tonnes in January of last year and down 91% from a 2020 peak, recorded in October, of 26,221.5 tonnes, according to Commerce Department figures.

By Michael Cowden,

Michael Cowden

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