The U.S. Commerce Department has initiated antidumping and countervailing duty investigations of hardwood and decorative plywood imports from China.
Dumping occurs when an overseas company sells a product in the United States at less than its fair value, while countervailable subsidies are financial assistance from governments that benefit the production of goods from foreign companies and are limited to specific industries, or are contingent either on export or use of domestic goods over imported goods.
The petitioner for these investigations is the Coalition for Fair Trade of Hardwood Plywood, whose members include Columbia Forest Products, Greensboro, N.C.; Commonwealth Plywood, Whitehall, N.Y.; Murphy Plywood, Eugene, Ore.; Roseburg Forest Products Co., Roseburg and Dillard, Ore.; States Industries, Eugene, Ore.; and Timber Products Co., Springfield, Ore.
The merchandise covered by these investigations is a panel composed of two or more layers or plies of wood veneers in combination with a core. The several layers, along with the core, are glued or bonded together to form a finished product. A hardwood and decorative plywood panel can be composed of one or more species of hardwoods, softwoods, or bamboo.
The most common panel sizes are 48 by 72 inches, 48 by 96 inches, and 48 by 120 inches. However, these panels may be cut-to-size by the manufacturer in line with a customer’s requirements, or made to other sizes, the Commerce Department said.
In 2011, hardwood and decorative plywood imports from China were valued at $616.5 million.
In addition to Commerce, the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) is scheduled to make its preliminary injury determination by Nov. 13.
If the ITC determines that there is a reasonable indication that imports from China injure the domestic industry, the investigations will continue, and Commerce will make its preliminary determinations in the antidumping and countervailing duty investigations in December 2012 and March 2013, respectively, unless the determinations are extended.