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New AD/CV Investigations on Steel Kegs, Aluminium Wire and Cable

The U.S. International Trade Commission has initiated antidumping and countervailing duty investigations of mainland Chinese (1) refillable steel kegs classified under HTSUS subheadings 7310.10.0010, 7310.10.0050, 7310.29.0025 and 7310.29.0050, and (2) aluminium wire and cable classified under HTSUS subheadings 8544.49.9000 and 8544.42.9090. The petitioners contend in separate petitions that these products are being sold at less than fair value in the U.S. market and are also benefitting from countervailable subsidies. The alleged average dumping margins are 196.55 percent in the steel keg proceeding and range from 53.2 percent to 63.1 percent in the aluminium wire and cable petition. There are strict statutory deadlines associated with these proceedings, so affected companies that wish to protect their interests should contact trade counsel as soon as possible.

Refillable Steel Kegs
The petitions cover cylindrical kegs, vessels or containers capable of being pressurised made from stainless steel (i.e., steel containing at least 10.5 percent chromium by weight and less than 1.2 percent carbon by weight, with or without other elements), with a nominal liquid volume capacity of 10 litres or more, regardless of the type of finish, gauge, thickness or grade of stainless steel, regardless of finish, and whether or not covered by or encased in other materials. Subject merchandise may be imported assembled or unassembled, with or without all components (including spears, couplers or taps, necks, collars and valves), and filled or unfilled. Assembled refillable stainless steel kegs must be capable of being pressurised to 60 pounds per square inch and must be tested to 90 PSI.

“Unassembled” or “unfinished” kegs include drawn stainless steel cylinders that have been welded to form the body of the keg and welded to an upper (top) chime and/or lower (bottom) chime. Unassembled kegs may or may not be welded to a neck, may or may not have a valve assembly attached, and may be otherwise complete except for testing, certification and/or marking.

Subject merchandise also includes kegs that have been further processed in a third country, including attachment of necks, collars, spears or valves, heat treatment, pickling, passivation, painting, testing, certification or any other processing that would not otherwise remove the merchandise from the scope of the investigation if performed in the country of manufacture of the in-scope refillable stainless steel keg.

Specifically excluded are the following: (1) vessels or containers that are not cylindrical in nature; (2) stainless steel kegs, vessels or containers that have either a “ball lock” valve system or a “pin lock” valve system (commonly known as a “Cornelius,” “corny” or “ball lock” keg); (3) any fully assembled or finished stainless steel keg, vessel or container that is incompatible with a “D Sankey” extractor (commonly known as a “D Coupler” or “Sankey”); (4) necks, spears, couplers or taps, collars and valves that are not imported with the subject merchandise; and (5) stainless steel kegs that are filled with beer, wine or other liquid and that are designated by the commissioner of customs as instruments of international traffic within the meaning of section 332(a) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended.

The USITC’s AD/CV injury investigation schedule is as follows: return questionnaires are due by 4 October, the staff conference will be held on 11 October, post-conference briefs are due by 16 October, and a preliminary injury vote has been scheduled for 2 November.

Aluminium Wire and Cable
The petitions cover aluminium wire and cable, which is defined as an assembly of one or more electrical conductors made from 8000 Series Aluminum Alloys, Aluminum Alloy 1350 and/or Aluminum Alloy 6201, provided that: (1) at least one of the electrical conductors is insulated; (2) each insulated electrical conductor has a voltage rating greater than 80 volts and not exceeding 1,000 volts; and (3) at least one electrical conductor is stranded and has a size not less than 16.5 kcmil and not greater than 1,000 kcmil. The assembly may or may not (1) include a grounding or neutral conductor; (2) be clad with aluminium, steel or other base metal; or (3) include a steel support centre wire, one or more connectors, a tape shield, a jacket or other covering, and/or filler materials.

Most AWC products conform to National Electrical Code types THHN, THWN, THWN-2, XHHW-2, USE, USE-2, RHH, RHW or RHW-2, and also conform to Underwriters Laboratories standards UL-44, UL-83, UL-758, UL-854, UL-1063, UL-1277, UL-1569, UL-1581 or UL-4703, but such conformity is not required for the merchandise to be included within the scope. The scope specifically excludes conductors that are included in equipment already assembled at the time of importation. Also excluded are aluminium wire and cable products in lengths less than six feet.   

The USITC’s AD/CV injury investigation schedule is as follows: return questionnaires are due by 5 October, the staff conference will be held on 12 October, post-conference briefs are due by 17 October, and a preliminary injury vote has been scheduled for 2 November.

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