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Summer has Arrived and Trade Topics are Heating Up

There are a number of issues we will cover in this month’s report.Our 9th Administrative Review is getting ready to begin.New and old scope challenges are in the queue.Other matters in the trade arena have emerged from monitoring systems to the 232.
We have requested administrative reviews in the antidumping (AD) and countervailing duties (CVD) cases on 95 producers and exporters of extrusions from China, largely based on the Port Import/Export Reporting Service-PIERS data. We requested a review on the company we believe to be Kingtom’s Chinese parent, Fujian Minfa Aluminum, as well as Kingtom itself. Kingtom also requested a review of both orders, as did one of the importers subject to the Kingtom Enforce and Protect Act (EAPA) allegation, Global Aluminum Distributor. Kingtom and Global Aluminum Distributor requested that the review be postponed by a year and consolidated with the next review cycle. This delay would give the company time to cook their books and delays their current …
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Another Big Win for the Industry!

The news of our win in the CCM solar mount case was well earned, indeed.Having lost a solar mount case a few years ago, our ability to prevail this time was enabled by our victory in court in a matter involving kitchen appliance handles.We worked to get that win in the Meridian/appliance handle case because of the precedent it would set.That precedent speaks to the core of our scope: fabricated aluminum extrusions that are kitted are subject merchandise, as long as that kit is NOT a final and finished product once assembled.The last administration took the opinion that subassemblies should be considered a final completed product.As a result, we lost four key decisions, one of which was solar mounting systems.The Fair Trade Committee decided that, should we win the Meridian case on the grounds we sought, then we should re-fight these applications as they become available for us to do so.That is what we did here, and we won!
We do have a few other updates this month concerning our case…

Transshipment and Scope Issues Dominate the Fair-Trade Agenda in Our China Case

With the renewal of our trade orders against China a year away, our recent focus in the China case has been on pending scope exclusion requests and reports of transshipment activity. I will briefly discuss those items with you this month.

Reflection Window resubmitted its initial scope request on January 9, 2020, in response to the DOC’s supplemental questionnaire of September 23, 2019. Its original request fell under the “finished goods kits” exclusion, and it has resubmitted under that exclusion but indicated that it also intends to submit an exclusion request under the finished merchandise exclusion. We have submitted an extension request for the final determination (currently scheduled for February 24, 2020). This is critical case for our industry. Having won decisively in the curtain wall cases in recent years, now the Chinese are attempting to imitate curtain wall with this hybrid product. We will be watching this case carefully.

The AEC is also watching the changes in tariffs b…

New Year, New Threats

Welcome to 2020!  A New Year and fresh decade are upon us, and with it comes new threats to AEC’s ambition to provide for a fair and free trade environment.  Members across the AEC have entered this year with an array issues on the trade front that are impacting their businesses.  It is the mission and role of the AEC to look for legal remedies to address these threats.  Some will have obvious solutions, while others may be more complicated.  If you are one of these members that are seeing new threats, please let me know.  Furthermore, AEC members, make it a point to come to this year’s 71st Annual Meeting & Leadership Conference,  March 12 – 14, 2020, in San Antonio.  We have put time on the schedule to host a Town Hall.  I want to hear from you, and I want you to hear from others, what these risks are, and have our legal team discuss possible strategies.  This is a must attend meeting!

Our case against China is going well.  We are in the final stages of the 8th Annual Administra…

Fair Trade Update: 232 Tariff Impacts Alarming Members, Foreign Imports Rising

Most of the activity this month related to fair and free trade was external to our ongoing trade cases against China.  Reports of increasing threats to the North American market from other countries continue to grow, and there is clear uncertainty about the impacts of the 232 tariff exemptions for Canada and Mexico on the U.S. industry.  I’ll come back to that in a minute, but first, let me catch you up on issues that did involve our China case.
The 8th Annual Administrative Review is now underway.  Having virtually no opposition from the Chinese industry in either our Anti-Dumping (AD) or Countervailing Duty (CVD) cases, we have withdrawn most of our efforts.  Instead, we will be focus on individual Chinese exporters whose duties we think we can cause to be increased.  This is an efficient use of our resources and similar to the strategy we’ve deployed in recent administrative reviews.  As a result, we expect the base rates to stay the same, which are approximately 86% for the AD case…

The AEC’s Multi-Front Trade War

Since 2011, the U.S. aluminum extrusion industry has benefited from some of the most effective trade orders ever issued by the U.S. government.  During that time, Chinese imports as a percentage of market share has dropped from 25% to less than 1%.  So, manning the desk at the AEC that handles trade orders should be a pretty quiet job, right?  Well, not in the last 30 days!

The impacts of China’s unrelenting overproduction and continuing investment in new capacity is effecting markets all over the world, and in some of those cases, this translates into new imports from these countries into North America.  China’s actions are displacing local production in other countries, which in turn are forced to find new markets for their extrusion production.  In other cases, China has invested in new extrusion plants in these countries as a part of their ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative.  However, this month we were witness to China’s favorite play: circumvention.

As we reported, the Department of…