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Carbon and Alloy Steel Threaded Rod From Thailand: Preliminary Affirmative Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value, Preliminary Affirmative Determination of Critical Circumstances

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AGENCY:

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

SUMMARY:

The Department of Commerce (Commerce) preliminarily determines that carbon and alloy steel threaded rod (steel threaded rod) from Thailand is being, or is likely to be, sold in the United States at less than fair value (LTFV). The period of investigation (POI) is January 1, 2018 through December 31, 2018. Interested parties are invited to comment on this preliminary determination.

DATES:

Applicable August 7, 2019.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Eliza Siordia, AD/CVD Operations, Office V, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-3878.

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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 March 19, 2019.[1] For a complete description of the events that followed the initiation of this investigation, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.[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 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 the electronic versions of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

Scope of the Investigation

The products covered by this investigation are steel threaded rods from Thailand. For a complete description of the scope of this investigation, see Appendix I.

Scope Comments

In accordance with the preamble to Commerce's regulations,[3] the Initiation Notice set aside a period of time for parties to raise issues regarding product Start Printed Page 38598coverage (i.e., scope).[4] 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.[5] 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. Pursuant to section 776(a) and (b) of the Act, Commerce has preliminarily relied upon facts otherwise available, with adverse inferences, for the mandatory respondent, Tycoons Worldwide Group (Thailand) Co. Ltd. (Tycoons), because this respondent did not timely respond to Commerce's antidumping duty questionnaire. For a full description of the methodology underlying the preliminary determination, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.

Preliminary Affirmative Determination of Critical Circumstances

In accordance with section 733(e) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.206, Commerce preliminarily finds that critical circumstances exist for Tycoons, and for all other producers and exporters. For a full description of the methodology and results of Commerce's critical circumstances analysis, 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. We cannot apply the methodology described in section 735(c)(5)(A) of the Act to calculate the all-others rate because the sole margin in this preliminary determination was derived pursuant to section 776 of the Act. In cases where no weighted-average dumping margin other than margins that are zero, de minimis, or those determined entirely under section 776 of the Act has been established for individually examined entities, in accordance with section 735(c)(5)(B) of the Act, Commerce averages the margins calculated by the petitioners in the petition and applies the result to all other entities not individually examined.[6]

In the Petition, the petitioner calculated only one margin.[7] Therefore, we assigned as the all-others rate the only margin in the Petition, which is 20.83 percent.[8]

Preliminary Determination

Commerce preliminarily determines that the following estimated weighted-average dumping margin exists during the period January 1, 2018 through December 31, 2018:

Exporter/producerEstimated weighted- average dumping margin (percent)
Tycoons Worldwide Group (Thailand) Co. Ltd20.83
All Others20.83

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 the 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 respondent 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.

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 subject 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. Commerce preliminarily finds that critical circumstances exist for imports of subject merchandise produced or exported by Tycoons and all others. In accordance with section 733(e)(2)(A) of the Act, the suspension of liquidation shall apply to unliquidated entries of shipments of subject merchandise from the producer(s) or exporter(s) identified in this paragraph that were entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the date which is 90 days before the publication of this notice.

Disclosure

Normally, Commerce discloses to interested parties the calculations performed in connection with a 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 the notice of preliminary determination in the Federal Register, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.224(b). However, because Commerce preliminarily applied AFA to the individually examined company, Tycoons, in this investigation, in accordance with section 776 of the Act, and the applied AFA rate is based solely on the petition, there are no calculations to disclose.Start Printed Page 38599

Verification

Because the examined respondents in this investigation did not provide information requested by Commerce, and Commerce preliminarily determines that the examined respondent has been uncooperative, we will not conduct verification.

Public Comment

Case briefs or other written comments may be submitted to the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance no later than 50 days after the date of publication of the preliminary determination, unless the Secretary alters the time limit. Rebuttal briefs, limited to issues raised in case briefs, may be submitted no later than five days after the deadline date for case briefs.[9] 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.

Final Determination

Section 735(a)(1) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.210(b)(1) provide that Commerce will issue the final determination within 75 days after the date of its preliminary determination. Accordingly, Commerce will make its final determination no later than 75 days after the signature date 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 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.

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: July 30, 2019.

Jeffrey I. Kessler,

Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.

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Appendix I—Scope of the Investigation

The merchandise covered by the scope of these investigations is carbon and alloy steel threaded rod. Steel threaded rod is certain threaded rod, bar, or studs, of carbon or alloy steel, having a solid, circular cross section of any diameter, in any straight length. Steel threaded rod is normally drawn, cold-rolled, threaded, and straightened, or it may be hot-rolled. In addition, the steel threaded rod, bar, or studs subject to these investigations are non-headed and threaded along greater than 25 percent of their total actual length. A variety of finishes or coatings, such as plain oil finish as a temporary rust protectant, zinc coating (i.e., galvanized, whether by electroplating or hot-dipping), paint, and other similar finishes and coatings, may be applied to the merchandise.

Steel threaded rod is normally produced to American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) specifications ASTM A36, ASTM A193 B7/B7m, ASTM A193 B16, ASTM A307, ASTM A320 L7/L7M, ASTM A320 L43, ASTM A354 BC and BD, ASTM A449, ASTM F1554-36, ASTM F1554-55, ASTM F1554 Grade 105, American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) specification ASME B18.31.3, and American Petroleum Institute (API) specification API 20E. All steel threaded rod meeting the physical description set forth above is covered by the scope of these investigations, whether or not produced according to a particular standard.

Subject merchandise includes material matching the above description that has been finished, assembled, or packaged in a third country, including by cutting, chamfering, coating, or painting the threaded rod, by attaching the threaded rod to, or packaging it with, another product, or any other finishing, assembly, or packaging operation that would not otherwise remove the merchandise from the scope of the investigations if performed in the country of manufacture of the threaded rod.

Carbon and alloy steel threaded rod are also included in the scope of these investigations whether or not imported attached to, or in conjunction with, other parts and accessories such as nuts and washers. If carbon and alloy steel threaded rod are imported attached to, or in conjunction with, such non-subject merchandise, only the threaded rod is included in the scope.

Excluded from the scope of these investigations are: (1) Threaded rod, bar, or studs which are threaded only on one or both ends and the threading covers 25 percent or less of the total actual length; and (2) stainless steel threaded rod, defined as steel threaded rod containing, by weight, 1.2 percent or less of carbon and 10.5 percent or more of chromium, with our without other elements.

Excluded from the scope of the antidumping investigation on steel threaded rod from the People's Republic of China is any merchandise covered by the existing antidumping order on Certain Steel Threaded Rod from the People's Republic of China. See Certain Steel Threaded Rod from the People's Republic of China: Notice of Antidumping Duty Order, 74 FR 17154 (April 14, 2009).

Specifically excluded from the scope of these investigations is threaded rod that is imported as part of a package of hardware in conjunction with a ready-to-assemble piece of furniture.

Steel threaded rod is currently classifiable under subheadings 7318.15.5051, 7318.15.5056, and 7318.15.5090 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). Subject merchandise may also enter under subheading 7318.15.2095 and 7318.19.0000 of the HTSUS. The HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and U.S. Customs purposes only. The written description of the scope is dispositive.

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

I. Summary

II. Background

III. Period of Investigation

IV. Scope of the Investigation

V. Scope Comments

VI. Application of Facts Available and Use of Adverse Inference

VII. All-Others Rate

VIII. Preliminary Affirmative Determination of Critical Circumstances

IX. Recommendation

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Footnotes

1.  See Carbon and Alloy Steel Threaded Rod from India, Taiwan, Thailand, and the People's Republic of China: Initiation of Less-Than-Fair-Value Investigations, 84 FR 10034 (March 19, 2019) (Initiation Notice).

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

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

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4.  See Initiation Notic e.

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5.  See Memorandum, “Carbon and Alloy Steel Threaded Rod from India, Taiwan, Thailand, and the People's Republic of China: Scope Comments Decision Memorandum for the Preliminary Determinations,” dated July 22, 2019.

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6.  See Notice of Preliminary Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value: Sodium Nitrite from the Federal Republic of Germany, 73 FR 21909, 21912 (April 23, 2008), unchanged in Notice of Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value: Sodium Nitrite from the Federal Republic of Germany, 73 FR 38986, 38987 (July 8, 2008), and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum at Comment 2.

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7.  See Petitioner's Letter, “Petitions for the Imposition of Antidumping and Countervailing Duties: Carbon and Alloy Steel Threaded Rod from the People's Republic of China, India, Taiwan, and Thailand,” dated February 21, 2019 (the Petition).

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8.  See Notice of Preliminary Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Postponement of Final Determination: Purified Carboxymethylcellulose from Sweden, 69 FR 77213, 77215-16 (December 27, 2004), unchanged in Notice of Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value: Purified Carboxymethylcellulose from Sweden, 70 FR 28278 (May 17, 2005).

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

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[FR Doc. 2019-16888 Filed 8-6-19; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P