India to counter US anti-subsidy probe on forged steel fittings

Amiti Sen New Delhi | Updated on January 02, 2020

Some US firms have alleged dumping of Indian steel items   -  istock

US investigating 36 out of the 45 subsidy schemes from India

India is preparing to counter new anti-subsidy investigations initiated by the US against forged steel fittings imported from the country which could lead to imposition of penal countervailing duties (CVD) on carbon and alloy forged steel items like caps, sockets, plugs, bushings and outlets.

Commerce Ministry officials will go through the list of selected exporters for the investigation and the questionnaire from the US Department of Commerce (US DoC) and ready its reply, a government official told BusinessLine.

Of the 45 subsidy programmes from India identified by the petitioners as actionable, the US DoC established that there was sufficient information to initiate a CVD investigation on 36.

“As soon as we have access to the detailed questionnaire prepared by the US, our team of lawyers will scrutinise it and we will prepare our response. We believe that the dumping margins estimated by the US industry and the subsidy measures been identified as being against WTO rules by the petitioners are excessive,” the official said.

The US DoC initiated a CVD investigation to determine whether imports of forged steel fittings from India benefit from countervailable subsidies conferred by the government of India, as per a notice published by the International Trade Administration on November 21 2019.

Petition by US firms

The initiation is based on a CVD petition filed on behalf of Bonney Forge Corporation, a domestic producer of forged steel fittings, and the United Steel, Paper and Forestry, Rubber, Manufacturing, Energy, Allied Industrial and Service Workers International Union, a certified labour union whose members include workers at the facilities in which the ‘domestic like’ product is produced, the notification said.

The period of investigation for the case is from January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018. In 2018, the US imported forged steel fittings worth an estimated $92.6 million from India, as per industry calculations.

US plea for dumping duty

The petition was accompanied by anti-dumping duty petitions concerning imports of forged steel fittings from India and the Republic of Korea, the ITA notification further stated.

As per the petitioners, the “subsidised’’ imports of steel fittings from India has resulted in substantial injury to the the domestic industry in the US.

It is illustrated by a significant and increasing volume of subject imports, reduced market share, underselling and price depression or suppression and declines in the domestic industry’s production, capacity utilisation, US shipments, and financial performance, the petitioners argued.

US DoC officials also had a round of consultations with their counterparts from India on the petition in November 2019.

Published on January 02, 2020

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