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Scope & Trade Enforcement Issues Dominate our Efforts

This month’s update will cover the key events related to the scope of our tariff orders.  This is the arena we’ve been focused upon in the last month.  Even so, we continue to work on trade enforcement issues, which I will also address.

There are three scope issues worth noting.  The first is the door threshold case.  Challenged by three importers, door thresholds with Chinese aluminum extrusions that were fabricated in either China or Vietnam were under review.  As reported in our trade alert in mid-January, the domestic industry prevailed in this matter.  It was an important victory because our trade orders specifically mention door thresholds as covered merchandise.  To have lost this case would have meant all aspects of our orders could be vulnerable to scope challenges.  It is also noteworthy to mention the penetration these importers had into the domestic product.  Some reported they had become the second, third, and fifth largest sellers of door thresholds in the U.S. This repr…
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Keeping You in the Loop on AEC Fair Trade Issues

Since my last update, a few issues have been settled, and a couple more are pending.  I’ll use this update to bring you into the loop.  The curtain wall case has a hearing date (finally), our work with the EAPA program has shut down two operations, and the industry awaits a final decision in the RUSAL sanctions issue.  Meanwhile, there is no indication from the administration that they plan to grant Canada and Mexico an exclusion from 232 tariffs.

Curtain wall has been a big issue in the fair trade case in recent months.  The long awaited ‘final’ appeal on the scope decision to keep curtain wall covered by our orders has been set.  The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has scheduled oral argument on the Chinese exporters’ appeal of the Court of International Trade’s ruling that imports of Yuanda’s curtain wall units are subject to unfair trade tariffs on aluminum extrusions.  Oral arguments will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, February 5th at the Court (717 Madison Place, NW,…

2018 Year End Update

In the last few weeks we have advanced several open issues important to our trade case against China.  Meanwhile, critical macro-political issues remain open and pose risks to our market in 2019.  Let’s first discuss our case.

The Seventh Administrative Review is underway.  Preliminary results are expected in late January 2019.  The AEC withdrew its requests for mandatory respondents in October.  The Department of Commerce (DOC) will be selecting respondents in December. Given the history of reviews in recent years, there is a high likelihood that no respondents will come forward and rates will remain as they are today: 80% on the dumping case and 26% for the subsidy case.

Scope issues continue to be the most active legal element of our orders.  Working with Endura Products, we continue to push the DOC for a decision in the door threshold cases.  We are waiting for the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to announce the date of the curtain wall appeal.  Also, briefi…

Relatively Quiet on the Aluminum Extrusion Fair Trade Front

This month our focus has been on the upcoming hearing for the appeal on the 5050 decision. AEC’s legal team has been preparing the Departments of Justice and Commerce for their upcoming litigation at the Court of International Trade.  Tai-Ao filed an appeal of the Department’s final 5050 circumvention determination, filing its summons on August 11, 2017 and complaint on August 31, 2017.  Our motion to intervene was granted on September 28, 2017.  This case has been consolidated with Regal’s appeal of the circumvention determination.  We filed response briefs on September 27, 2018 as did the Department of Justice.  Plaintiff’s reply briefs are due November 15, 2018.  After all the briefs have been submitted, oral arguments will be scheduled.  Most likely this will take place in the first quarter of 2019.

The 7th Administrative Review is underway.  We withdrew our Anti-dumping/coutervailing duties (AD/CVD) review requests on October 10, 2018.  Columbia, the only other company to request…

AEC Duties Unchanged; “Trumponomics” Impacts Extruders

Our 6th Annual Administrative Review results have been announced.  As previously reported, the Department of Commerce (DOC) maintained extrusion tariffs at 86.01% for our subsidy, or countervailing duty (CVD), case and 20% for our anti-dumping (AD) case.  The combined duty of 106% has been stable since 2016.  This is a good number for the industry, which continues to contain Chinese aluminum extrusion at less than 1% market share. Furthermore, the DOC also assigned the Adverse Facts Available (AFA) rate of 198.61% to the two mandatory respondents, Liaoning Zhongwang Group Co., Ltd. and Liaoyang Zhongwang Aluminum Profile Co. Ltd., which has been the AFA rate since the 5th review.  The 7th Annual Administrative Review has begun with the selection of mandatory respondents. 

Elsewhere in our case, there is nothing new to report on the scope issues we are battling.  We continue to wait for court dates or decisions depending on the matter.  Our trade enforcement actions and results have ma…

Trade Enforcement Efforts Are Paying Off

I am happy to report that things are going well for us in our ongoing trade case against Chinese extruders.  The Seventh Administrative Review has commenced, scope issues and  results are falling our way, and we continue to make progress in our trade enforcement efforts. 

Mandatory respondents are being confirmed for the Seventh Administrative Review.  We have asked the Department of Commerce to select at least one curtain wall and one door threshold exporter.  This helps us in the review and in the scope challenges involving both of those end uses.  Furthermore, we plan to maintain our position that the other elements that make up a curtain wall unit or door threshold, which are subsidized like the extrusions, be subject to the review.  Winning this argument keeps the rates high.  As a reminder, the current countervailing duty is 20% and the anti-dumping rate is 86% for a total duty of 106%.  This grueling process will go on for a few months with the final results due December of 201…

Trump Not Interested in ‘Saving’ the Aluminum Market & Cheaters BEWARE!

On Thursday, May 31, President Trump announced that he is “taking action to protect America’s national security from the effects of global oversupply of steel and aluminum” by imposing a 10% tariff on aluminum imports from some of our strongest allies and aluminum industry partners: Canada, Mexico and the European Union.  The implementation of these tariffs follows “extensive discussions and a months-long process” after the initial proclamations in March. In an article posted on whitehouse.gov, the statement notes that “[the] President made it clear that the Administration was willing to work with those countries to find separate arrangements that would meet the national security requirements of the United States.” The statement goes on to read, “Current quantities and circumstances of steel and aluminum imports into the United States threaten to impair national security. These excessive imports are driven in large part by the worldwide glut from overproduction by other countries.”

Re…