NEW YORK The U.S. Commerce Departments International Trade Administration (ITA) has assessed countervailing margins of zero against imports of concrete reinforcing bar from Turkey.
In a preliminary determination, the ITA calculated a de minimis rate of 0.78 percent for Habas Sinai ve Tibbi Gazlar Istihsal Endustrisi AS and a de minimis rate of 0.10 percent for Icdas Celik Enerji ve Ulasim Sanayi AS, the mandatory respondents in the subsidy case.
"Because the preliminary countervailing duty rates are de minimis, Commerce will not instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to collect cash deposits," the ITA said in a statement Feb. 20.
The five petitioners in the caseByer Steel Corp., Cincinnati; Cascade Steel Rolling Mills Inc., McMinnville, Ore.; Commercial Metals Co., Irving, Texas; Gerdau Long Steel North America, Tampa, Fla.; and Nucor Corp., Charlotte, N.C.filed the trade complaint in September, alleging that Turkish rebar producers received government subsidies and that imports from Turkey and Mexico were being dumped in the United States, injuring the domestic industry and its workers (amm.com, Sept. 4).
"We are disappointed with the results," a source close to the U.S. petitioners said. "We think its clear that energy subsidies are provided to Turkish rebar producers. When the subsidies are properly investigated it will be an affirmative decision."
Some U.S. rebar market sources polled by AMM expect the ruling to put pressure on domestic rebar prices, forcing mills to lower prices.
"Its less than 1 percent. Its not even a slap on the wrist. It does nothing," a rebar buyer in the Midwest said. "It will hurt the domestic producers case. It will have a negative effect on prices, and prices will probably fallespecially because scrap prices are softening. Well have to wait and see what happens."
"I think it will force domestic producers to lower their prices," a buyer in the South said. "Theyre under pressure to be more cost competitive."
AMMs spot transaction price for grade 60, No. 5 rebar has held steady at $34.50 per hundredweight ($690 per ton) f.o.b. mill for February and early March production despite lower ferrous scrap prices in February (amm.com, Feb. 19).
Other market sources think mills will keep their domestic prices stable due to thinning margins.
"I doubt it will have an immediate impact on prices. I dont see mills lowering prices," a second Midwest buyer said.
"I dont agree with the rebar trade case. The judge that looked at the case was right and the domestic mills were wrong," a second rebar buyer in the South said.
The ITAs final ruling on the subsidy complaint is due by July 2.
The agencys preliminary ruling on the dumping allegation against Turkey and Mexico had been scheduled for Feb. 27, but it has been pushed back to April 18 at the request of the Rebar Trade Action Coalition (amm.com, Feb. 4).