• Thomas Russell

ITC sets hearing date, comment deadlines in hardwood plywood case

Industry input will factor into material injury determination

WASHINGTON –The U.S. government has scheduled the final phase of its investigation into hardwood plywood imports from China, including final public comment and hearing dates associated with the case.

The U.S. International Trade Commission has scheduled a hearing associated with the final phase of the investigation for 9:30 a.m., Oct. 26, at the ITC building in Washington. The deadline for requests to appear at this hearing is Oct. 19, and requests must be made in writing to the Secretary to the Commission. Those who wish to present at the hearing are also asked to take part in a prehearing conference set for Oct. 25 at the ITC.

Interested parties also should have their legal counsel submit prehearing briefs to the ITC by Oct. 18. Parties also may submit written testimony that communicates what they plan to say at the hearing.

The deadline for post hearing briefs also has been set for Nov. 2.

The deadlines relate to a petition filed late last year by a group called the Coalition for Fair Trade of Hardwood Plywood that is seeking countervailing and antidumping duties on Chinese made hardwood plywood. The countervailing duties are related to allegations the Chinese government is subsidizing Chinese manufacturers of these products, while the antidumping duties address allegations of unfair pricing tactics by the manufacturers.

The subject merchandise includes raw panels used by domestic manufacturers of cabinets, shelving, RVs and furniture. It does not cover finished goods such as furniture or cabinetry produced overseas. Duties are typically applied to foreign manufacturers but paid by importers of record of the subject merchandise.

The U.S. Department of Commerce has announced preliminary countervailing and antidumping duties on the products. However before these can take effect, the ITC must determine whether the domestic industry has been injured by the importation of these goods.

The public comments and testimony that are part of the hearing, along with documentation of job and financial losses experienced by the domestic industry, factor into the ITC’s decision regarding material injury.

The ITC offices are located at 500 E. St SW, Washington, D.C. 20436. Those wanting to participate and who wish to obtain additional information about the hearing process can contact Drew Dushkes at 202-205-3229.

Thomas RussellThomas Russell | Associate Editor, Furniture Today

I'm Tom Russell and have worked at Furniture/Today since August 2003. Since then, I have covered the international side of the business from a logistics and sourcing standpoint. Since then, I also have visited several furniture trade shows and manufacturing plants in Asia, which has helped me gain perspective about the industry in that part of the world. As I continue covering the import side of the business, I look forward to building on that knowledge base through conversations with industry officials and future overseas plant tours. From time to time, I will file news and other industry perspectives online and, as always, welcome your response to these Web postings.

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