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Notice

Steel Propane Cylinders From Thailand: Preliminary Affirmative Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Postponement of Final Determination

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AGENCY:

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

SUMMARY:

The Department of Commerce (Commerce) preliminarily determines that steel propane cylinders from Thailand are being, or are likely to be, sold in the United States at less than fair value (LTFV). Interested parties are invited to comment on this preliminary determination.

DATES:

Applicable December 27, 2018.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Cindy Robinson or Stephanie Moore, AD/CVD Operations, Office III, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-3797 or (202) 482-3692, respectively.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

This preliminary determination is made in accordance with section 733(b) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act). Commerce published the notice of initiation of this investigation on June 18, 2018.[1] On October 15, 2018, Commerce postponed the preliminary determination of this investigation and the revised deadline is now December 18, 2018.[2] For a complete description of the events that followed the initiation of this investigation, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.[3] 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 accessed directly at http://enforcement.trade.gov/​frn/​. The signed and electronic versions of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

Scope of the Investigation

The products covered by this investigation are steel propane cylinders from Thailand. For a complete discussion of the scope of this investigation, see Appendix I.

Scope Comments

In accordance with the preamble to Commerce's regulations,[4] the Initiation Notice set aside a period of time for parties to raise issues regarding product coverage (i.e., scope).[5] Certain interested parties commented on the scope of the investigation as it appeared in the Initiation Notice. 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.[6] Commerce is preliminarily modifying the scope language as it appeared in the Initiation Notice. See the revised scope in Appendix I to this notice.

Methodology

Commerce is conducting this investigation in accordance with section 731 of the Act. Export prices were calculated in accordance with section 772(a) of the Act. Normal value (NV) was calculated in accordance with section 773 of the Act. For a full description of the methodology underlying the preliminary determination, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.

All-Others Rate

Sections 733(d)(1)(ii) and 735(c)(5)(A) of the Act provide that in the preliminary determination Commerce shall determine an estimated all-others rate for all exporters and producers not individually examined. This 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.

Commerce calculated an individual estimated weighted-average dumping margin for Sahamitr Pressure Container Public Company Limited (SMPC), the only individually examined exporter/producer in this investigation. Because the only individually calculated dumping margin is not zero, de minimis, or based entirely on facts otherwise available, the estimated weighted-average dumping margin calculated for SMPC is the margin assigned to all-other producers and exporters, pursuant to section 735(c)(5)(A) of the Act.

Preliminary Determination

Commerce preliminarily determines that the following estimated weighted-average dumping margins exist:

Exporter/producerEstimated weighted-average dumping margin (percent)
Sahamitr Pressure Container Plc9.85
All-Others9.85

Suspension of Liquidation

In accordance with section 733(d)(2) of the Act, Commerce will direct U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to suspend liquidation of entries of subject merchandise, as described in Appendix I, entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the date of publication of this notice in Start Printed Page 66679the Federal Register. Further, pursuant to section 733(d)(1)(B) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.205(d), Commerce will instruct CBP to require a cash deposit equal to the estimated weighted-average dumping margin or the estimated all-others rate, as follows: (1) The cash deposit rate for the respondents listed above will be equal to the company-specific estimated weighted-average dumping margins determined in this preliminary determination; (2) if the exporter is not a respondent identified above, but the producer is, then the cash deposit rate will be equal to the company-specific estimated weighted-average dumping margin established for that producer of the subject merchandise; and (3) the cash deposit rate for all other producers and exporters will be equal to the all-others estimated weighted-average dumping margin.

Disclosure

Commerce intends to disclose its calculations and analysis performed to interested parties in this preliminary determination within five days of any public announcement or, if there is no public announcement, within five days of the date of publication of this notice in accordance with 19 CFR 351.224(b).

Verification

As provided in section 782(i)(1) of the Act, Commerce intends to verify the information relied upon in making its final determination.

Public Comment

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 last verification report is issued in this investigation. Rebuttal briefs, limited to issues raised in case briefs, may be submitted no later than five days after the deadline date for case briefs.[7] Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.309(c)(2) and (d)(2), parties who submit case briefs or rebuttal briefs in this investigation 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, limited to issues raised in the case and rebuttal briefs, must submit a written request to the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, U.S. Department of Commerce, within 30 days after the date of publication of this notice. Requests should contain the party's name, address, and telephone number, the number of participants, whether any participant is a foreign national, and a list of the issues to be discussed. If a request for a hearing is made, Commerce intends to hold the hearing at the U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 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.

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 the petitioner. Section 351.210(e)(2) of Commerce's regulations requires that a request by exporters for postponement of the final 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 10, 2018, in accordance with section 735(a)(2)(A) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.210(b)(2)(ii) and (e)(2), SMPC requested that Commerce postpone the final determination and that provisional measures by extended to a period not to exceed six months.[8] On December 12, 2018, the petitioners provided their support for SMPC's request to extend the final determination of this investigation.[9]

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

International Trade Commission Notification

In accordance with section 733(f) of the Act, Commerce will notify the International Trade Commission (ITC) of its affirmative preliminary determination. If the 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 the final determination whether these imports are materially injuring, or threaten material injury to, the U.S. industry.[10]

Notification to Interested Parties

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 18, 2018.

Gary Taverman,

Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations performing the non-exclusive functions and duties of the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.

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Appendix I

Scope of the Investigation

The merchandise covered by this investigation is steel cylinders for compressed or liquefied propane or other gases (steel propane cylinders) meeting the requirements of, or produced to meet the requirements of, U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) Specifications 4B, 4BA, or 4BW, or Transport Canada Specification 4BM, 4BAM, or 4BWM, or United Nations pressure receptacle standard ISO 4706 and otherwise meeting the description provided below. The scope includes steel propane cylinders regardless of whether they have been certified to these specifications before importation. Steel propane cylinders range from 2.5 pound nominal gas capacity (approximate 6 pound water capacity and approximate 4-6 pound tare weight) to 42 pound nominal gas capacity (approximate 100 pound water capacity and approximate 28-32 pound tare weight). Steel propane cylinders have two or fewer ports and may be imported assembled or unassembled (i.e., welded or brazed before or after importation), with or without all components (including collars, valves, gauges, tanks, foot rings, and overfill prevention devices), and coated or uncoated. Also included within the scope are drawn cylinder halves, unfinished propane cylinders, collars, and foot rings for steel propane cylinders.Start Printed Page 66680

An “unfinished” or “unassembled” propane cylinder includes drawn cylinder halves that have not been welded into a cylinder, cylinders that have not had flanges welded into the port hole(s), cylinders that are otherwise complete but have not had collars or foot rings welded to them, otherwise complete cylinders without a valve assembly attached, and cylinders that are otherwise complete except for testing, certification, and/or marking.

This investigation also covers steel propane cylinders that meet, are produced to meet, or are certified as meeting, other U.S. or Canadian government, international, or industry standards (including, for example, American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), or American National Standard Institute (ANSI)), if they also meet, are produced to meet, or are certified as meeting USDOT Specification 4B, 4BA, or 4BW, or Transport Canada Specification 4BM, 4BAM, or 4BWM, or a United Nations pressure receptacle standard ISO 4706.

Subject merchandise also includes steel propane cylinders that have been further processed in a third country, including but not limited to, attachment of collars, foot rings, or handles by welding or brazing, heat treatment, painting, testing, certification, or any other processing that would not otherwise remove the merchandise from the scope of the investigation if performed in the country of manufacture of the in-scope steel propane cylinders.

Specifically excluded are seamless steel propane cylinders and propane cylinders made from stainless steel (i.e., steel containing at least 10.5 percent chromium by weight and less than 1.2 percent carbon by weight), aluminum, or composite fiber material. Composite fiber material is material consisting of the mechanical combination of two components: Fiber (typically glass, carbon, or aramid (synthetic polymer)) and a matrix material (typically polymer resin, ceramic, or metallic).

The merchandise subject to this investigation is properly classified under statistical reporting numbers 7311.00.0060 and 7311.00.0090 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). Although the HTSUS statistical reporting numbers are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description of the merchandise is dispositive.

Appendix II

List of Topics Discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum

I. Summary

II. Background

III. Period of Investigation

IV. Postponement of Final Determination and Extension of Provisional Measures

V. Scope Comments

VI. Discussion of the Methodology

A. Determination of the Comparison Method

B. Results of the Differential Pricing Analysis

VII. Date of Sale

VIII. Product Comparisons

IX. Export Price

X. Normal Value

A. Comparison Market Viability

B. Level of Trade

C. Cost of Production (COP) Analysis

1. Calculation of COP

2. Test of Comparison Market Sales Prices

3. Results of the COP Test

D. Calculation of NV Based on Comparison Market Prices

XI. Currency Conversion

XII. Verification

XIII. Recommendation

End Supplemental Information

Footnotes

1.  See Steel Propane Cylinders from the People's Republic of China, Taiwan, and Thailand: Initiation of Less-Than-Fair-Value Investigations, 83 FR 28196 (June 18, 2018) (Initiation Notice) and accompanying Initiation Checklist.

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2.  See Steel Propane Cylinders from the People's Republic of China and Thailand: Postponement of Preliminary Determinations in the Less-Than-Fair- Value Investigations, 83 FR 51927 (October 15, 2018) (Preliminary Postponement Notice).

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3.  See Memorandum, “Decision Memorandum for the Preliminary Determination in the Less-Than-Fair-Value Investigation of Steel Propane Cylinders from Thailand” dated concurrently with, and hereby adopted by, this notice (Preliminary Decision Memorandum).

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

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5.  See Initiation Notice, 83 FR at 28196.

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6.  See Memorandum, “Scope Comments Decision Memorandum for the Preliminary Determinations” (Preliminary Scope Decision Memorandum), dated concurrently with this preliminary determination.

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7.  See 19 CFR 351.309; see also 19 CFR 351.303 (for general filing requirements).

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8.  See SMPC's letter, “Steel Propane Cylinders from Thailand: Request to Postpone Deadline for Issuing the Final Determination,” dated December 10, 2018.

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9.  See the petitioners' letter, “Steel Propane Cylinders from Thailand—Petitioners' Concur In the Request of SMPC to Extend the Antidumping Duty Final Determination,” dated December 12, 2018.

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10.  See section 735(b)(2) of the Act.

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[FR Doc. 2018-28066 Filed 12-26-18; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P