U.S. Commerce Department finds welded pipe from four countries subsidized; India to be penalized with maximum duty

The U.S. Commerce Department announced a preliminary finding that imports of large-diameter welded pipe from China, India, South Korea and Turkey were subsidized by those countries, as per a Reuters report. It has threatened to impose preliminary duties that could go as high as 500 per cent.

The US Commerce Department had opened an investigation in March this year to evaluate if six countries, including Canada and Greece, were dumping iron pipes used to build oil and gas pipelines in the U.S. markets or were being unfairly subsidized by their governments.

The probe is one of more than 100 cases that President Donald Trump’s administration has opened since taking office that are aimed at protecting U.S. manufacturers in global markets.

The US Commerce Department said it was imposing preliminary anti-subsidy duties on imports of the pipe from India of up to 541.15 percent and on those from China of up to 198.49 percent.

Pipe imports from South Korea will face countervailing duties from 0.01 percent up to 3.31 percent, and from Turkey from 1.08 percent to 3.76 percent.

Imports in 2017 of large-diameter welded pipe were valued at an estimated $29.2 million from China, $294.7 million from India, $150.9 million from South Korea and $57.3 million from Turkey, Commerce figures show.

The Commerce Department launched the investigation after a petition from a group of privately held U.S. producers. The probe covered welded carbon and alloy steel pipe larger than 16 inches (406.4 mm) in diameter.

The Commerce department earlier estimated dumping margins on the pipe at 50.89 percent for Canada, 120.84 percent to 132.63 percent for China, 41.04 percent for Greece, 37.94 percent for India, 16.18 percent and 20.39 percent for South Korea, and 66.09 percent for Turkey.

The U.S. International Trade Commission is scheduled to make a final decision by Dec. 20 this year on whether the subsidies harm U.S. producers, after which Commerce may issue countervailing duty orders that typically run for five years.

Shekhar Ghosh is consulting editor, Indoasiancommodities.com. He has edited and written for publications like Business India, Business Standard, Business Today, Outlook and many other international publications. He can be reached at shekhar.ghosh@indoasiancommodities.in.

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