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Notice

Certain Motorized Vehicles and Components Thereof; Notice of Commission Decision To Review in Part a Final Initial Determination Finding a Violation of Section 337; Schedule for Filing Written Submissions; Extension of the Target Date for Completion of the Investigation

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AGENCY:

U.S. International Trade Commission.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

Notice is hereby given that the U.S. International Trade Commission has determined to review in part a final initial determination (“FID”) of the presiding administrative law judge (“ALJ”) finding a violation of section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended. The Commission also extends the target date for completion of this investigation by five business days to March 20, 2020.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Houda Morad, Office of the General Counsel, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20436, telephone (202) 708-4716. Copies of non-confidential documents filed in connection with this investigation are or will be available for inspection during official business hours (8:45 a.m. to 5:15 p.m.) in the Office of the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20436, telephone (202) 205-2000. General information concerning the Commission may also be obtained by accessing its internet server at https://www.usitc.gov. The public record for this investigation may be viewed on the Commission's electronic docket (EDIS) at https://edis.usitc.gov. Hearing-impaired persons are advised that information on this matter can be obtained by contacting the Commission's TDD terminal on (202) 205-1810.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Commission instituted this investigation on September 13, 2018, based on a complaint, as amended, filed by FCA US LLC of Auburn Hills, Michigan (“Complainant”). See 83 FR 46517 (Sept. 13, 2018). The complaint alleges violations of section 337 based upon the importation into the United States, the sale for importation, and the sale within the United States after importation of certain motorized vehicles and components thereof by reason of: (1) Infringement of U.S. Trademark Registration Nos. 4,272,873; 2,862,487; 2,161,779; 2,794,553; and 4,043,984 (collectively, “the registered trademarks”); (2) trademark dilution and unfair competition in violating the complainant's common law trademark rights; and (3) trade dress infringement. See id. The notice of investigation names Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. of Mumbai, India and Mahindra Automotive North America, Inc. of Auburn Hills, Michigan (collectively, “Respondents”) as respondents in this investigation. See id. The Office of Unfair Import Investigations is also a party to this investigation. See id.

On November 8, 2019, the ALJ issued the FID finding a violation of section 337. Specifically, the FID finds that Respondents' Roxor vehicle infringes Complainant's asserted trade dress but not its registered trademarks. The FID also finds that the domestic industry requirement is satisfied. The RD recommends that the Commission issue a limited exclusion order barring entry of Respondents' articles that infringe the asserted trade dress and a cease and desist order against Respondents. In addition, the RD recommends that the Commission set a bond during the period of Presidential review at ten percent on unassembled Roxor components or one percent on the finished Roxor vehicle.

The Commission has determined to review the FID in part. Specifically, the Commission has determined to review the FID's findings with respect to the validity and infringement of the asserted trade dress, as well as importation findings relating to Complainant's trade dress infringement claim. With respect to Complainant's claim of infringement of its registered trademarks, the Commission has determined to review the FID's findings on infringement and domestic industry. The Commission has further determined not to review the remainder of the FID.

The Commission has also determined to extend the target date by five business days to March 20, 2020.

At this time, the Commission does not request briefing from the parties on the issues under review. The Commission is requesting briefing on the issues of remedy, the public interest, and bonding solely with respect to Complainant's trade dress infringement claim.

In connection with the final disposition of this investigation, the Commission may (1) issue an order that could result in the exclusion of the subject articles from entry into the United States, and/or (2) issue one or more cease and desist orders that could result in the respondent(s) being required to cease and desist from engaging in unfair acts in the importation and sale of such articles. Accordingly, the Commission is interested in receiving written submissions that address the form of remedy, if any, that should be ordered. If a party seeks exclusion of an article from entry into the United States for purposes other than entry for consumption, the party should so indicate and provide information establishing that activities involving other types of entry either are adversely affecting it or likely to do so. For background, see Certain Devices for Connecting Computers via Telephone Lines, Inv. No. 337-TA-360, USITC Pub. No. 2843 (Dec. 1994) (Comm'n Op.).

If the Commission contemplates some form of remedy, it must consider the effects of that remedy upon the public interest. The factors the Commission will consider include the effect that an exclusion order and/or cease and desist orders would have on (1) the public health and welfare, (2) competitive conditions in the U.S. economy, (3) U.S. production of articles that are like or directly competitive with those that are subject to investigation, and (4) U.S. consumers. The Commission is therefore interested in receiving written submissions that address the aforementioned public interest factors in the context of this investigation.

If the Commission orders some form of remedy, the U.S. Trade Representative, as delegated by the President, has 60 days to approve, disapprove, or take no action the Commission's determination. See Presidential Memorandum of July 21, 2005, 70 FR 43251 (July 26, 2005). During this period, the subject articles would be entitled to enter the United States under bond, in an amount determined by the Commission and prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury. The Commission is therefore interested in receiving submissions concerning the amount of the bond that should be imposed if a remedy is ordered.

Written Submissions: Parties to the investigation, interested government agencies, and any other interested parties are encouraged to file written submissions on the issues of remedy, the public interest, and bonding. Such submissions should also address the recommended determination by the ALJ on remedy and bonding. Complainant is also requested to submit proposed remedial orders for the Commission's consideration with its initial written submission. Complainant is further requested to state the HTSUS numbers Start Printed Page 5036under which the accused products are imported, and to supply the names of known importers of the products at issue in this investigation.

Written submissions and proposed remedial orders must be filed no later than close of business on February 7, 2020. Reply submissions must be filed no later than the close of business on February 14, 2020 and must be limited to issues raised in the initial written submissions. No further submissions on any of these issues will be permitted unless otherwise ordered by the Commission.

Persons filing written submissions must file the original document electronically on or before the deadlines stated above and submit eight (8) true paper copies to the Office of the Secretary by noon the next day pursuant to section 210.4(f) of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (19 CFR 210.4(f)). Submissions should refer to the investigation number (“Inv. No. 337-TA-1132”) in a prominent place on the cover page and/or the first page. (See Handbook for Electronic Filing Procedures, https://www.usitc.gov/​documents/​handbook_​on_​filing_​procedures.pdf). Persons with questions regarding filing should contact the Secretary (202-205-2000).

Any person desiring to submit a document to the Commission in confidence must request confidential treatment. All such requests should be directed to the Secretary to the Commission and must include a full statement of the reasons why the Commission should grant such treatment. See 19 CFR 201.6. Documents for which confidential treatment by the Commission is properly sought will be treated accordingly. All information, including confidential business information and documents for which confidential treatment is properly sought, submitted to the Commission for purposes of this Investigation may be disclosed to and used: (i) By the Commission, its employees and Offices, and contract personnel (a) for developing or maintaining the records of this or a related proceeding, or (b) in internal investigations, audits, reviews, and evaluations relating to the programs, personnel, and operations of the Commission including under 5 U.S.C. Appendix 3; or (ii) by U.S. government employees and contract personnel,[1] solely for cybersecurity purposes. All non-confidential written submissions will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Secretary and on EDIS.

The authority for the Commission's determination is contained in section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1337), and in part 210 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (19 CFR part 210).

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By order of the Commission.

Issued: January 22, 2020.

Lisa Barton,

Secretary to the Commission.

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Footnotes

1.  All contract personnel will sign appropriate nondisclosure agreements.

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[FR Doc. 2020-01375 Filed 1-27-20; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 7020-02-P