Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce.
Effective Date: November 14, 2014.
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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
David Goldberger at (202) 482-4136 (the Republic of Korea (Korea)), or Alice Maldonado at (202) 482-4682 (the Republic of Turkey (Turkey)), AD/CVD Operations, Enforcement and Compliance, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230.
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On October 16, 2014, the Department of Commerce (the Department) received antidumping duty (AD) petitions concerning imports of welded line pipe from Korea and Turkey filed in proper form on behalf of American Cast Iron Pipe Company, Energex (a division of JMC Steel Group), Maverick Tube Corporation, Northwest Pipe Company, Stupp Corporation (a division of Stupp Bros., Inc.), Tex-Tube Company, TMK IPSCO, and Welspun Tubular LLC USA (collectively, the petitioners). The AD petitions were accompanied by two countervailing duty (CVD) petitions.
The petitioners are domestic producers of welded line pipe.
On October 21, 2014, the Department requested additional information and clarification of certain portions of the Petitions.
The petitioners filed responses to these requests on October 24, 2014, and October 29, 2014.
On October 27 and October 31, 2014, we received submissions from United States Steel Corporation (U.S. Steel), a domestic producer of welded line pipe, in support of the Petitions.
In accordance with section 732(b) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act), the petitioners allege that welded line pipe from Korea and Turkey is being, or is likely to be, sold in the United States at less than fair value within the meaning of section 731 of the Act and that such imports are materially injuring, or threatening material injury to, an industry in the United States. Also, consistent with section 732(b)(1) of the Act, the Petitions are accompanied by information reasonably available to the petitioners supporting their allegations.
The Department finds that the petitioners filed the Petitions on behalf of the domestic industry because the petitioners are interested parties as defined in section 771(9)(C) of the Act. The Department also finds that the petitioners demonstrated sufficient industry support with respect to the initiation of the AD investigations that the petitioners are requesting.
Period of Investigation
Because the Petitions were filed on October 16, 2014, pursuant to 19 CFR 351.204(b)(1) the period of investigation for both Korea and Turkey is October 1, 2013, through September 30, 2014.
Scope of the Investigations
The product covered by these investigations is welded line pipe from Korea and Turkey. For a full description of the scope of these investigations, see the “Scope of the Investigations” in Appendix I of this notice.
Comments on Scope of the Investigations
During our review of the Petitions, the Department issued questions to, and received responses from, the petitioners pertaining to the proposed scope to ensure that the scope language in the Petitions would be an accurate reflection of the products for which the domestic industry is seeking relief.
As discussed in the preamble to the Department's regulations,
we are setting aside a period for interested parties to raise issues regarding product coverage (scope). The period for scope comments is intended to provide the Department with ample opportunity to consider all comments and to consult with parties prior to the issuance of the preliminary determinations. If scope comments include factual information (see 19 CFR 351.102(b)(21)), all such factual information should be limited to public information. All such comments must be filed by 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on November 25, 2014, which is 20 calendar days from the signature date of this notice. Any rebuttal comments, which may include factual information, must be filed by 5:00 p.m. EST on December 5, 2014, which is 10 calendar days after the initial comments deadline.
The Department requests that any factual information the parties consider Start Printed Page 68214relevant to the scope of the investigations be submitted during this time period. However, if a party subsequently finds that additional factual information pertaining to the scope of the investigations may be relevant, the party may contact the Department and request permission to submit the additional information. All such comments must be filed on the records of the Korea and Turkey AD and CVD investigations.
All submissions to the Department must be filed electronically using Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (IA ACCESS).
An electronically-filed document must be received successfully in its entirety by the time and date it is due. Documents excepted from the electronic submission requirements must be filed manually (i.e., in paper form) with Enforcement and Compliance's APO/Dockets Unit, Room 1870, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230, and stamped with the date and time of receipt by the applicable deadlines.
Comments on Product Characteristics for AD Questionnaires
The Department requests comments from interested parties regarding the appropriate physical characteristics of welded line pipe to be reported in response to the Department's AD questionnaires. This information will be used to identify the key physical characteristics of the subject merchandise in order to report the relevant factors and costs of production accurately, as well as to develop appropriate product-comparison criteria.
Interested parties may provide any information or comments that they feel are relevant to the development of an accurate list of physical characteristics. Specifically, they may provide comments as to which characteristics are appropriate to use as: (1) general product characteristics; and (2) product-comparison criteria. We note that it is not always appropriate to use all product characteristics as product-comparison criteria. We base product-comparison criteria on meaningful commercial differences among products. In other words, although there may be some physical product characteristics utilized by manufacturers to describe welded line pipe, it may be that only a select few product characteristics take into account commercially meaningful physical characteristics. In addition, interested parties may comment on the order in which the physical characteristics should be used in matching products. Generally, the Department attempts to list the most important physical characteristics first and the least important characteristics last.
In order to consider the suggestions of interested parties in developing and issuing the AD questionnaires, all comments must be filed by 5:00 p.m. EST on November 25, 2014, which is 20 calendar days from the signature date of this notice. Any rebuttal comments must be filed by 5:00 p.m. EST on December 2, 2014. All comments and submissions to the Department must be filed electronically using IA ACCESS, as explained above, on the records of the Korea and Turkey less-than-fair-value investigations.
Determination of Industry Support for the Petitions
Section 732(b)(1) of the Act requires that a petition be filed on behalf of the domestic industry. Section 732(c)(4)(A) of the Act provides that a petition meets this requirement if the domestic producers or workers who support the petition account for: (i) at least 25 percent of the total production of the domestic like product; and (ii) more than 50 percent of the production of the domestic like product produced by that portion of the industry expressing support for, or opposition to, the petition. Moreover, section 732(c)(4)(D) of the Act provides that, if the petition does not establish support of domestic producers or workers accounting for more than 50 percent of the total production of the domestic like product, the Department shall: (i) poll the industry or rely on other information in order to determine if there is support for the petition, as required by subparagraph (A); or (ii) determine industry support using a statistically valid sampling method to poll the “industry.”
Section 771(4)(A) of the Act defines the “industry” as the producers as a whole of a domestic like product, or those producers whose collective output of a domestic like product constitutes a major proportion of the total domestic production of the product. Thus, to determine whether a petition has the requisite industry support, the statute directs the Department to look to producers and workers who produce the domestic like product. The International Trade Commission (ITC), which is responsible for determining whether “the domestic industry” has been injured, must also determine what constitutes a domestic like product in order to define the industry. While both the Department and the ITC must apply the same statutory definition regarding the domestic like product,
they do so for different purposes and pursuant to a separate and distinct authority. In addition, the Department's determination is subject to limitations of time and information. Although this may result in different definitions of the like product, such differences do not render the decision of either agency contrary to law.
Section 771(10) of the Act defines the domestic like product as “a product which is like, or in the absence of like, most similar in characteristics and uses with, the article subject to an investigation under this title.” Thus, the reference point from which the domestic like product analysis begins is “the article subject to an investigation” (i.e., the class or kind of merchandise to be investigated, which normally will be the scope as defined in the petition).
With regard to the domestic like product, the petitioners do not offer a definition of the domestic like product distinct from the scope of the investigations. Based on our analysis of the information submitted on the record, we have determined that welded line pipe, as defined in the scope of the investigations, constitutes a single domestic like product and we have analyzed industry support in terms of that domestic like product.
In determining whether the petitioners have standing under section 732(c)(4)(A) of the Act, we considered Start Printed Page 68215the industry support data contained in the Petitions with reference to the domestic like product as defined in the “Scope of the Investigations,” in Appendix I of this notice. To establish industry support, the petitioners provided their production of the domestic like product in 2013, as well as the production of a company that supports the Petitions, and compared this to the total production of the domestic like product for the entire domestic industry.
On October 27, 2014, we received a submission from U.S. Steel, a domestic producer of welded line pipe. In the submission, U.S. Steel states that it supports the AD and CVD petitions on welded line pipe from Korea and Turkey.
In an additional submission on October 31, 2014, U.S. Steel provided its 2013 production of the domestic like product.
We have relied upon data that the petitioners and U.S. Steel provided for purposes of measuring industry support.
Based on information provided in the Petitions, supplemental submissions, and other information readily available to the Department, we determine that the petitioners have met the statutory criteria for industry support under section 732(c)(4)(A)(i) of the Act because the domestic producers (or workers) who support the Petitions account for at least 25 percent of the total production of the domestic like product.
Based on information provided in the Petitions, supplemental submissions, and submissions from U.S. Steel, the domestic producers (or workers) have met the statutory criteria for industry support under section 732(c)(4)(A)(ii) of the Act because the domestic producers (or workers) who support the Petitions account for more than 50 percent of the production of the domestic like product produced by that portion of the industry expressing support for, or opposition to, the Petitions. Accordingly, the Department determines that the Petitions were filed on behalf of the domestic industry within the meaning of section 732(b)(1) of the Act.
The Department finds that the petitioners filed the Petitions on behalf of the domestic industry because they are interested parties as defined in section 771(9)(C) of the Act and they have demonstrated sufficient industry support with respect to the AD investigations that they are requesting the Department initiate.
Allegations and Evidence of Material Injury and Causation
The petitioners allege that the U.S. industry producing the domestic like product is being materially injured, or is threatened with material injury, by reason of the imports of the subject merchandise sold at less than fair value. In addition, the petitioners allege that subject imports exceed the negligibility threshold provided for under section 771(24)(A) of the Act.
The petitioners contend that the industry's injured condition is illustrated by reduced market share, underselling and price depression or suppression, lost sales and revenues, declining shipments, reduced production capacity, and a decline in financial performance.
We assessed the allegations and supporting evidence regarding material injury, threat of material injury, and causation, and we determined that these allegations are properly supported by adequate evidence and meet the statutory requirements for initiation.
Allegations of Sales at Less Than Fair Value
The following is a description of the allegations of sales at less than fair value upon which the Department based its decision to initiate investigations of imports of welded line pipe from Korea and Turkey. The sources of data for the deductions and adjustments relating to U.S. price and normal value (NV) are discussed in greater detail in the country-specific initiation checklists.
For Korea, the petitioners based U.S. price on price quotes from a trading company, which sells welded line pipe produced by a Korean producer, offered for sale to a U.S. customer. The petitioners made deductions for movement and other expenses consistent with the sales and delivery terms of the price quotes. They also made a deduction for the trading company mark-up.
For Turkey, the petitioners based U.S. price on the average unit value for U.S. imports of welded line pipe under Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) number 7306.19.1050, obtained from the ITC's Dataweb for the period of October 2013 through August 2014.
The petitioners assert that this HTSUS subheading includes welded line pipe most similar to that found in the home market price quote. The petitioners made no adjustments to U.S. price for movement costs for shipping the merchandise from the port in Turkey to the United States because the AUV is based on customs values which do not include these expenses. Further, the petitioners conservatively did not deduct foreign inland freight expenses from the U.S. price because known producers are in close proximity to the port.
For Korea and Turkey, the petitioners based NV on price quotes provided for the foreign like product produced in the subject country by producer(s) of welded line pipe in that country and sold or offered for sale in the subject country by producer(s) of welded line pipe.
Consistent with the terms of sale and delivery, the petitioners did not make deductions for movement or other expenses.
Fair Value Comparisons
Based on the data provided by the petitioners, there is reason to believe that imports of welded line pipe from Korea and Turkey are being, or are likely to be, sold in the United States at less than fair value. Based on comparisons of export price to NV in accordance with section 773(a) of the Act, the estimated dumping margins for welded line pipe from Korea range from 48.49 percent to 202.31 percent.
The estimated dumping margin for Turkey is 9.85 percent.
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Initiation of Less-Than-Fair-Value Investigations
Based upon the examination of the AD Petitions on welded line pipe from Korea and Turkey, we find that the Petitions meet the requirements of section 732 of the Act. Therefore, we are initiating AD investigations to determine whether imports of welded line pipe from Korea and Turkey are being, or are likely to be, sold in the United States at less than fair value. In accordance with section 733(b)(1)(A) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.205(b)(1), unless postponed, we will make our preliminary determinations no later than 140 days after the date of this initiation.
The petitioners named 13 companies as producers/exporters of welded line pipe from Korea, and 13 from Turkey.
Following standard practice in AD investigations involving market economy countries, the Department will, where appropriate, select respondents based on U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data for U.S. imports of welded line pipe during the period of investigation under HTSUS numbers: 7305.11.1030; 7305.11.5000; 7305.12.1030; 7305.12.5000; 7305.19.1030; 7305.19.5000; 7306.19.1010; 7306.19.1050; 7306.19.5110; and 7306.19.5150. We intend to release CBP data under Administrative Protective Order (APO) to all parties with access to information protected by APO shortly after the announcement of these case initiations. The Department invites comments regarding CBP data and respondent selection within five calendar days of publication of this Federal Register notice. Comments must be filed electronically using IA ACCESS. An electronically-filed document must be received successfully in its entirety by the Department's electronic records system, IA ACCESS, by 5 p.m. Eastern time by the date noted above. We intend to make our decision regarding respondent selection within 20 days of publication of this Federal Register notice. Interested parties must submit applications for disclosure under APO in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305(b). Instructions for filing such applications may be found on the Department's Web site at http://enforcement.trade.gov/apo.
Distribution of Copies of the Petitions
In accordance with section 732(b)(3)(A) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.202(f), copies of the public version of the Petitions have been provided to the governments of Korea and Turkey via IA ACCESS. Because of the particularly large number of producers/exporters identified in the Petitions, the Department considers the service of the public version of the Petitions to the foreign producers/exporters to be satisfied by the provision of the public version of the Petitions to the governments of Korea and Turkey, consistent with 19 CFR 351.203(c)(2).
We have notified the ITC of our initiation, as required by section 732(d) of the Act.
Preliminary Determinations by the ITC
The ITC will preliminarily determine, within 45 days after the date on which the Petitions were filed, whether there is a reasonable indication that imports of welded line pipe from Korea and/or Turkey are materially injuring or threatening material injury to a U.S. industry.
A negative ITC determination for any country will result in the investigation being terminated with respect to that country; 
otherwise, these investigations will proceed according to statutory and regulatory time limits.
Submission of Factual Information
On April 10, 2013, the Department published Definition of Factual Information and Time Limits for Submission of Factual Information: Final Rule, 78 FR 21246 (April 10, 2013), which modified two regulations related to AD and CVD proceedings: the definition of factual information (19 CFR 351.102(b)(21)), and the time limits for the submission of factual information (19 CFR 351.301). The final rule identifies five categories of factual information in 19 CFR 351.102(b)(21), which are summarized as follows: (i) Evidence submitted in response to questionnaires; (ii) evidence submitted in support of allegations; (iii) publicly available information to value factors under 19 CFR 351.408(c) or to measure the adequacy of remuneration under 19 CFR 351.511(a)(2); (iv) evidence placed on the record by the Department; and (v) evidence other than factual information described in (i)-(iv). The final rule requires any party, when submitting factual information, to specify under which subsection of 19 CFR 351.102(b)(21) the information is being submitted and, if the information is submitted to rebut, clarify, or correct factual information already on the record, to provide an explanation identifying the information already on the record that the factual information seeks to rebut, clarify, or correct. The final rule also modified 19 CFR 351.301 so that, rather than providing general time limits, there are specific time limits based on the type of factual information being submitted. These modifications are effective for all proceeding segments initiated on or after May 10, 2013, and thus are applicable to these investigations. Interested parties should review the final rule, available at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/2013/1304frn/2013-08227.txt prior to submitting factual information in these investigations.
Revised Extension of Time Limits Regulation
On September 20, 2013, the Department modified its regulation concerning the extension of time limits for submissions in AD and CVD proceedings.
The modification clarifies that parties may request an extension of time limits before a time limit established under 19 CFR 351 expires, or as otherwise specified by the Secretary. In general, an extension request will be considered untimely if it is filed after the time limit established under Part 351 expires. For submissions which are due from multiple parties simultaneously, an extension request will be considered untimely if it is filed after 10:00 a.m. on the due date. Examples include but are not limited to: (1) Case and rebuttal briefs, filed pursuant to 19 CFR 351.309; (2) factual information to value factors under 19 CFR 351.408(c), or to measure the adequacy of remuneration under 19 CFR 351.511(a)(2) filed pursuant to 19 CFR 351.301(c)(3) and rebuttal, clarification and correction information filed pursuant to 19 CFR 351.301(c)(3)(iv); (3) comments concerning the selection of a surrogate country and surrogate values and rebuttal; (4) comments concerning CBP data; and (5) quantity and value questionnaires. Under certain circumstances, the Department may elect to specify a different time limit by which extension requests will be considered untimely for submissions which are due from multiple parties simultaneously. In such a case, the Department will inform parties in the letter or memorandum setting forth the deadline (including a specified time) by which extension requests must be filed to be considered timely. This modification also requires that an extension request must be made in a separate, stand-alone submission, and Start Printed Page 68217clarifies the circumstances under which the Department will grant untimely-filed requests for the extension of time limits. These modifications are effective for all segments initiated on or after October 21, 2013. Interested parties should review Extension of Time Limits; Final Rule, available at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2013-09-20/html/2013-22853.htm, prior to submitting factual information in these investigations.
Any party submitting factual information in an AD or CVD proceeding must certify to the accuracy and completeness of that information.
Parties are hereby reminded that revised certification requirements are in effect for company/government officials, as well as their representatives. Investigations initiated on the basis of petitions filed on or after August 16, 2013, and other segments of any AD or CVD proceedings initiated on or after August 16, 2013, should use the formats for the revised certifications provided at the end of the Final Rule.
The Department intends to reject factual submissions if the submitting party does not comply with the applicable revised certification requirements.
Notification to Interested Parties
Interested parties must submit applications for disclosure under APO in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305. On January 22, 2008, the Department published Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Proceedings: Documents Submission Procedures; APO Procedures, 73 FR 3634 (January 22, 2008). Parties wishing to participate in these investigations should ensure that they meet the requirements of these procedures (e.g., the filing of letters of appearance as discussed in 19 CFR 351.103(d)).
This notice is issued and published pursuant to section 777(i) of the Act.
Date: November 5, 2014.
Ronald K. Lorentzen,
Acting Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
Scope of the Investigations
The merchandise covered by these investigations is circular welded carbon and alloy steel (other than stainless steel) pipe of a kind used for oil or gas pipelines (welded line pipe), not more than 24 inches in nominal outside diameter, regardless of wall thickness, length, surface finish, end finish, or stenciling. Welded line pipe is normally produced to the American Petroleum Institute (API) specification 5L, but can be produced to comparable foreign specifications, to proprietary grades, or can be non-graded material. All pipe meeting the physical description set forth above, including multiple-stenciled pipe with an API or comparable foreign specification line pipe stencil is covered by the scope of these investigations.
The welded line pipe that is subject to these investigations is currently classifiable in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) under subheadings 7305.11.1030, 7305.11.5000, 7305.12.1030, 7305.12.5000, 7305.19.1030, 7305.19.5000, 7306.19.1010, 7306.19.1050, 7306.19.5110, and 7306.19.5150. The subject merchandise may also enter in HTSUS 7305.11.1060 and 7305.12.1060. While the HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description of the scope of these investigations is dispositive.
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[FR Doc. 2014-26894 Filed 11-13-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P