NEW YORK A deviation from a 2010 U.S. Customs ruling that the site of heat treatment determines the country of origin for finished oil country tubular goods (OCTG) could "harm the predictability (of) doing business in the United States," an Indonesian government official said.
The U.S. Commerce Departments International Trade Administration (ITA) issued a preliminary ruling recently that Chinese green tube processed in third countries are subject to anti-dumping and countervailing duties imposed on Chinese seamless product (amm.com, June 5).
The government of Indonesia believes that processed OCTG "undergo(es) certain manufacturing processes that substantially transform imported green tubes, i.e. from China, India and other countries. Therefore, we are convinced that the country of origin of the finished OCTG is Indonesia," director of trade defense Oke Nurwan said in a letter to the ITA.
Other opponents of the preliminary ruling claim the ITA erred in its analysis.
"The department incorrectly analyzed the facts relating to ... four of the five substantial transformation factors in the preliminary scope ruling," lawyers at Washington-based law firm Miller & Chevalier Chartered wrote on behalf of Toyota Tsusho America Inc., the Georgetown, Ky.-based subsidiary of Nagoya, Japan-based Toyota Tsusho Corp.
The agency underestimated the sophistication of processing the tubes, the substantive change in product properties that processing causes, the cost of transformation and the level of investment required to process the green tube, according to the law firm.
Bell Supply Co. LLC, whose agreement with Indonesias PT Citra Tubindo Tbk to import processed green tubes from China to the domestic market formed the basis of the ITAs investigation, wrote that in the original anti-dumping investigation on the product the International Trade Commission (ITC) did not address processed green tubes. "Consequently, as a matter of law, the department may not now include this merchandise within the scope of the orders," lawyers at Washington-based Morris, Manning & Martin LLP wrote on behalf of Gainesville, Texas-based Bell Supply.
A final ruling by the ITA is expected by Sept. 30.
Some OCTG market participants have flagged up the importance of the case (amm.com, June 25) and one of the domestic manufacturers that initiated the scope inquiry last year said that the U.S. market could be flooded with Chinese OCTG if a narrow ruling was applied (amm.com, April 16).