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Notice

Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products From the Republic of Korea: Affirmative Preliminary Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Postponement of Final Determination

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce.

SUMMARY:

The Department of Commerce (the “Department”) preliminarily determines that certain corrosion-resistant steel products (“corrosion-resistant steel”) from the Republic of Korea (Korea) are being, or are likely to be, sold in the United States at less than fair value (“LTFV”), as provided in section 733(b) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (“the Act”). The period of investigation (“POI”) is April 1, 2014, through March 31, 2015. The estimated weighted-average dumping margins of sales at LTFV are shown in the “Preliminary Determination” section of this notice. Interested parties are invited to comment on this preliminary determination.

DATES:

Effective date: January 4, 2016.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Elfi Blum or Lingjun Wang, AD/CVD Operations, Office VII, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-0197 or (202) 482-2316, respectively.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

The Department published the notice of initiation of this investigation on June 30, 2015.[1] For a complete description of the events that followed the initiation of this investigation, see the memorandum that is dated concurrently with this determination and hereby adopted by this notice.[2] A list of topics included in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum is included as Appendix II to this notice. The Preliminary Decision Memorandum is a public document and is on file electronically via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (“ACCESS”). ACCESS is available to registered users at https://access.trade.gov, and to all parties in the Central Records Unit, Room B8024 of the main Department of Commerce building. In addition, a complete version of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum can be found at http://enforcement.trade.gov/​frn/​. The signed Preliminary Decision Memorandum and the electronic version of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

Scope of the Investigation

The product covered by this investigation is corrosion-resistant steel from Korea. For a full description of the scope of this investigation, see the “Scope of the Investigation,” in Appendix I.

Scope Comments

In accordance with the preamble to the Department's regulations,[3] the Initiation Notice set aside a period of time for parties to raise issues regarding product coverage (i.e., “scope”).[4] Certain interested parties commented on the scope of the investigation as it appeared in the Initiation Notice, as well as additional language proposed by the Department. For a summary of the product coverage comments and rebuttal responses submitted to the record for this preliminary determination, and accompanying discussion and analysis of all comments timely received, see the Preliminary Scope Decision Memorandum.[5] The Department is preliminarily modifying the scope language as it appeared in the Initiation Notice to clarify that corrosion-resistant steel which is further processed in a third country is covered by the scope of the investigation. See “Scope of the Investigation,” in Appendix I, which includes the additional clarifying language.

Postponement of Deadline for Preliminary Determination

On October 14, 2015, the Department published the notice of postponement for the preliminary determination in this investigation in accordance with section 733(c)(1)(B) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.205(f)(1).[6] As a result of the 41-day postponement, the revised deadline for the preliminary determination of this investigation is now December 21, 2015.[7]

Methodology

The Department is conducting this investigation in accordance with section 731 of the Act. Export prices (“EP”) have been calculated in accordance with section 772(a) of the Act. Constructed export prices (“CEP”) have been calculated in accordance with section 772(b) of the Act. Normal value (“NV”) is calculated in accordance with section 773 of the Act. For a full description of the methodology underlying our preliminary conclusions, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.

All-Others Rate

Consistent with sections 733(d)(1)(A)(ii) and 735(c)(5) of the Act, the Department also calculated an estimated all-others rate. Section 735(c)(5)(B) of the Act provides that the estimated all-others rate shall be an amount equal to the weighted average of the estimated weighted-average dumping margins established for exporters and producers individually investigated, excluding any zero and de minimis margins, and any margins determined entirely under section 776 of the Act. Where the rates for investigated companies are zero or de minimis, or based entirely on facts othervwise available, section 705(c)(5)(A)(ii) of the Act instructs the Department to establish an “all others” rate using “any reasonable method.”

In this investigation, we calculated weighted-average dumping margins for Hyundai Steel Company (Hyundai) and Dongkuk Steel Mill Co., Ltd./Union Steel Manufacturing Co., Ltd. (Dongkuk/Union), that are above de minimis and which are not based on total facts available. We calculated the all-others rate using a simple average of the Start Printed Page 79dumping margins calculated for the mandatory respondents.[8]

Preliminary Determination

The Department preliminarily determines that the following dumping margins exist:

Exporter/manufacturerDumping margins (percent)
Dongkuk Steel Mill Co., Ltd./Union Steel Manufacturing Co., Ltd2.99
Hyundai Steel Company3.51
All Others3.25

Suspension of Liquidation

In accordance with section 733(d)(2) of the Act, we will direct U.S. Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) to suspend liquidation of all entries of corrosion-resistant steel from Korea as described in the scope of the investigation section entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the date of publication of this notice in the Federal Register, except for Hyundai ” as described below. Section 733(e)(2) of the Act provides that, given an affirmative determination of critical circumstances, any suspension of liquidation shall apply to unliquidated entries of merchandise entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the later of (a) the date which is 90 days before the date on which the suspension of liquidation was first ordered, or (b) the date on which notice of initiation of the investigation was published. On October 29, 2015, we preliminarily found that critical circumstances exist for imports exported by Hyundai and “all others.” For Hyundai and “all others”, in accordance with section 733(e)(2)(A) of the Act, suspension of liquidation of corrosion-resistant steel from Korea, as described in the “Scope of the Investigation” section, shall apply to unliquidated entries of merchandise entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the date which is 90 days before the publication of this notice, the date suspension of liquidation is first ordered. Because we find critical circumstances do not exist for Dongkuk/Union, we will begin suspension of liquidation for such firm on the date of publication of this notice in the Federal Register.

Pursuant to section 733 (d)(1)(B) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.205(d), the Department will instruct CBP to require a cash deposit equal to the weighted-average amount by which the NV exceeds U.S. price as indicated in the chart above,[9] adjusted where appropriate for export subsidies,[10] as follows: (1) The rate for Hyundai and the “all others” producers or exporters, when adjusted for export subsidies, is 3.50 and 3.24 (adjusted by 0.01%) percent, respectively; (2) as Dongkuk/Union did not receive export subsidies in the accompanying CVD investigation, we did not make an adjustment to Dongkuk/Union's weighted-average dumping margin.[11] These suspension of liquidation instructions will remain in effect until further notice.

Disclosure and Public Comment

We will disclose the calculations performed to interested parties in this proceeding within five days of the date of publication of this notice in accordance with 19 CFR 351.224(b). Interested parties are invited to comment on this preliminary determination. Case briefs or other written comments may be submitted to the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance no later than seven days after the date on which the final verification report is issued in this proceeding, and rebuttal briefs, limited to issues raised in case briefs, may be submitted no later than five days after the deadline date for case briefs.[12] Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.309(c)(2) and (d)(2), parties who submit case briefs or rebuttal briefs in this proceeding are encouraged to submit with each argument: (1) A statement of the issue; (2) a brief summary of the argument; and (3) a table of authorities.

Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.310(c), interested parties who wish to request a hearing must submit a written request to the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, U.S. Department of Commerce. All documents must be filed electronically using ACCESS. An electronically-filed request must be received successfully in its entirety by ACCESS by 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time, within 30 days after the date of publication of this notice.[13] Requests should contain the party's name, address, and telephone number, the number of participants, and a list of the issues to be discussed. If a request for a hearing is made, the Department intends to hold the hearing at the U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230, at a time and date to be determined. Parties should confirm by telephone the date, time, and location of the hearing two days before the scheduled date.

Verification

As provided in section 782(i) of the Act, we intend to verify information relied upon in making our final determination.

Postponement of Final Determination and Extension of Provisional Measures

Section 735(a)(2) of the Act provides that a final determination may be postponed until not later than 135 days after the date of the publication of the preliminary determination if, in the event of an affirmative preliminary determination, a request for such postponement is made by exporters who account for a significant proportion of exports of the subject merchandise, or in the event of a negative preliminary determination, a request for such postponement is made by Petitioners. 19 CFR 351.210(e)(2) requires that requests by respondents for postponement of a final antidumping determination be accompanied by a request for extension of provisional measures from a four-month period to a period not more than six months in duration.

On December 16, 2015, pursuant to 19 CFR 351.210(b) and (e), Dongkuk/Union requested that, contingent upon an affirmative preliminary determination of Start Printed Page 80sales at LTFV for the respondents, the Department postpone the final determination and that provisional measures be extended to a period not to exceed six months.[14]

In accordance with section 735(a)(2)(A) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.210(b)(2)(ii), because (1) our preliminary determination is affirmative; (2) the requesting exporters account for a significant proportion of exports of the subject merchandise; and (3) no compelling reasons for denial exist, we are postponing the final determination and extending the provisional measures from a four-month period to a period not greater than six months. Accordingly, we will make our final determination no later than 135 days after the date of publication of this preliminary determination, pursuant to section 735(a)(2) of the Act.[15]

International Trade Commission (“ITC”) Notification

In accordance with section 733(f) of the Act, we are notifying the ITC of our affirmative preliminary determination of sales at LTFV. If our final determination is affirmative, the ITC will determine before the later of 120 days after the date of this preliminary determination or 45 days after our final determination whether these imports are materially injuring, or threaten material injury to, the U.S. industry.

This determination is issued and published in accordance with sections 733(f) and 777(i)(1) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.205(c).

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Dated: December 21, 2015.

Paul Piquado,

Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.

End Signature

Appendix I—Scope of the Investigation

The products covered by the scope are certain flat-rolled steel products, either clad, plated, or coated with corrosion-resistant metals such as zinc, aluminum, or zinc-, aluminum-, nickel- or iron-based alloys, whether or not corrugated or painted, varnished, laminated, or coated with plastics or other non-metallic substances in addition to the metal coating. The products covered include coils that have a width of 12.7 mm or greater, regardless of form of coil (e.g., in successively superimposed layers, spirally oscillating, etc.). The products covered also include products not in coils (e.g., in straight lengths) of a thickness less than 4.75 mm and a width that is 12.7 mm or greater and that measures at least 10 times the thickness. The products covered also include products not in coils (e.g., in straight lengths) of a thickness 4.75 mm or more than a width exceeding 150 mm and measuring at least twice the thickness. The products described above may be rectangular, square, circular, or other shape and include products of either rectangular or non-rectangular cross-section where such cross-section is achieved subsequent to the rolling process, i.e., products which have been “worked after rolling” (e.g., products which have been beveled or rounded at the edges). For purposes of the width and thickness requirements referenced above:

(1) Where the nominal and actual measurements vary, a product is within the scope if application of either the nominal or actual measurement would place it within the scope based on the definitions set for above, and

(2) where the width and thickness vary for a specific period (e.g., the thickness of certain products with non-rectangular cross-section, the width of certain products with non-rectangular shape, etc.), the measurement at its greatest width or thickness applies.

Steel products included in the scope in this investigation are products in which: (1) Iron predominates, by weight, over each of the other contained elements; (2) the carbon content is 2 percent or less, by weight; (3) none of the elements listed below exceeds the quantity, by weight, respectively indicated:

  • 2.50 Percent of manganese, or
  • 3.30 percent of silicon, or
  • 1.50 percent of copper, or
  • 1.25 percent of chromium, or
  • 0.30 percent of cobalt, or
  • 0.40 percent of lead, or
  • 2.00 percent of nickel, or
  • 0.30 percent of tungsten (also called wolfram), or
  • 0.80 percent of molybdenum, or
  • 0.10 percent of niobium (also called columbium), or
  • 0.30 percent of vanadium, or
  • 0.30 percent of zirconium

Unless specifically excluded, products are included in this scope regardless of levels of boron and titanium.

For example, specifically included in this scope are vacuum degassed, fully stabilized (commonly referred to interstitial-free (“IF”)) steels and high strength low alloy (“HSLA”) steels. IF steels are recognized as low carbon steels with micro-alloying levels of elements such as titanium and/or niobium added to stabilize carbon and nitrogen elements. HSLA steels are recognized as steels with micro-alloying levels of elements such as chromium, copper, niobium, titanium, vanadium, and molybdenum.

Furthermore, this scope also includes Advanced High Strength Steels (“AHSS”) and Ultra High Strength Steels (“UHSS”), both of which are considered high tensile strength and high elongation steels.

Subject merchandise also includes corrosion-resistant steel that has been further processed in a third country, including but not limited to annealing, tempering painting, varnishing, trimming, cutting, punching and/or slitting or any other processing that would not otherwise remove the merchandise from the scope of the investigations if performed in the country of manufacture of the in-scope corrosion resistant steel.

All products that meet the written physical description, and in which the chemistry quantities do not exceed any one of the noted element levels listed above, are within the scope of this investigation unless specifically excluded. The following products are outside of and/or specifically excluded from the scope of this investigation:

  • Flat-rolled steel products either plated or coated with tin, lead, chromium, chromium oxides, both tin and lead (“terne plate”), or both chromium and chromium oxides (“tin free steel”), whether or not painted, varnished or coated with plastics or other non-metallic substances in addition to the metallic coating;
  • Clad products in straight lengths of 4.7625 mm or more in composite thickness and of a width which exceeds 150 mm and measure at least twice the thickness; and
  • Certain clad stainless flat-rolled products, which are three-layered corrosion-resistant steel flat-rolled steel products less than 4.75 mm in composite thickness that consist of a flat-rolled steel product clad on both sides with stainless steel in a 20%-60%-20% ratio.

The products subject to the investigation are currently classified in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (“HTSUS”) under item numbers: 7210.30.0030, 7210.30.0060, 7210.41.0000, 7210.49.0030, 7210.49.0091, 7210.49.0095, 7210.61.0000, 7210.69.0000, 7210.70.6030, 7210.70.6060, 7210.70.6090, 7210.90.6000, 7210.90.9000, 7212.20.0000, 7212.30.1030, 7212.30.1090, 7212.30.3000, 7212.30.5000, 7212.40.1000, 7212.40.5000, 7212.50.0000, and 7212.60.0000.

The products subject to the investigation may also enter under the following HTSUS item numbers: 7210.90.1000, 7215.90.1000, 7215.90.3000, 7215.20.1500, 7217.30.1530, 7217.30.1560, 7217.90.1000, 7217.90.5030, 7217.90.5060, 7217.90.5090, 7225.91.0000, 7225.92.0000, 7225.99.0090, 7226.99.0110, 7226.99.0130, 7226.99.0180, 7228.60.6000, 7228.60.8000, and 7229.90.1000.

The HTSUS subheadings above are provided for convenience and customs purposes only. The written description of the scope of the investigation is dispositive.

Appendix II—List of Topics Discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum

I. Summary

II. Background

III. Period of Investigation

IV. Preliminary Determination of Critical Circumstances

V. Scope of the Investigation

VI. Successor-In-Interest Analysis

A. Dongkuk/Union

VII. Discussion of the Methodology

A. Determination of the Comparison Method

B. Results of the Differential Pricing Analysis

VIII. Date of Sale

IX. Product Comparisons

X. Export Price and Constructed Export Price

XI. Normal Value

A. Comparison Market Viability Start Printed Page 81

B. Affiliated-Party Transactions and Arm's-Length Test

C. Level of Trade

D. Cost of Production Analysis

E. Calculation of NV Based on Comparison Market Prices

XII. Currency Conversions

XIII. Conclusion

End Supplemental Information

Footnotes

1.  See Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from Italy, India, the People's Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, and Taiwan: Initiation of Less-Than-Fair-Value Investigations, 80 FR 37228 (June 30, 2015) (“Initiation Notice”).

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2.  See Memorandum from Gary Taverman, Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, to Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance “Decision Memorandum for the Preliminary Determination in the Antidumping Duty Investigation of Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from Korea” (“Preliminary Decision Memorandum”), dated concurrently with this notice.

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3.  See Antidumping Duties; Countervailing Duties, 62 FR 27296, 27323 (May 19, 1997).

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4.  See Initiation Notice, 80 FR at 37229.

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5.  See Memorandum to Gary Taverman, Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, “Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products From the People's Republic of China, India, Italy, the Republic of Korea, and Taiwan: Scope Comments Decision Memorandum for the Preliminary Determinations,” dated December 21, 2015.

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6.  See Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from India, Italy, the People's Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, and Taiwan: Postponement of Preliminary Determinations of Antidumping Duty Investigations, 80 FR 61793 (October 14, 2015).

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7.  See id.

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8.  With two respondents, we would normally calculate (A) a weighted-average of the dumping margins calculated for the mandatory respondents; (B) a simple average of the dumping margins calculated for the mandatory respondents; and (C) a weighted-average of the dumping margins calculated for the mandatory respondents using each company's publicly-ranged values for the merchandise under consideration. We would compare (B) and (C) to (A) and select the rate closest to (A) as the most appropriate rate for all other companies. See Ball Bearings and Parts Thereof From France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United Kingdom: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Reviews, Final Results of Changed-Circumstances Review, and Revocation of an Order in Part, 75 FR 53661, 53663 (September 1, 2010). As complete publicly ranged sales data was unavailable, we based the all-others rate on a simple average of the two calculated margins.

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9.  See Modification of Regulations Regarding the Practice of Accepting Bonds During the Provisional Measures Period in Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Investigations, 76 FR 61042 (October 3, 2011).

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10.  See section 772(c)(1)(C) of the Act. Unlike in administrative reviews, the Department calculates the adjustment for export subsidies in investigations not in the margin calculation program, but in the cash deposit instructions issued to CBP. See Notice of Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value, and Negative Determination of Critical Circumstances: Certain Lined Paper Products from India, 71 FR 45012 (August 8, 2006), and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum at Comment 1.

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11.  See Countervailing Duty Investigation of Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products From the Republic of Korea: Preliminary Affirmative Determination, 80 FR 68842 (November 6, 2015), and accompanying Preliminary Decision Memorandum.

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14.  See Letter to the Secretary of Commerce from Dongkuk/Union “Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from the Republic of Korea: Request for Postponement of the Final Determination” (December 16, 2015).

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[FR Doc. 2015-32762 Filed 12-31-15; 8:45 am]

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