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Commerce Department Says 5 Countries Have Been Dumping PET Resin on US Market

The U.S. Commerce Department has made preliminary determinations in the antidumping duty investigations of imports of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) resin–a raw material in polyester production–from Brazil, Indonesia, the South Korea, Pakistan and Taiwan.

Commerce Department’s ruling means it determined that exporters from the five countries sold PET resin in the U.S. at less than fair value. In the case of Brazil, those dumping rates were 24.09% to 226.91%, for Indonesia it was 13.16%; South Korea’s was 8.81% to 101.41%, Pakistan’s was 7.75% and Taiwan’s was 9.02% to 11.89%.

Commerce will now instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to collect cash deposits from importers of PET resin from those countries based on these preliminary rates.

“The department will use every tool at our disposal to defend U.S. industry against unfair trade practices,” Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said. “Today’s decision allows U.S. producers of PET resin to receive relief from the market-distorting effects of potential dumping, while the open and transparent process of investigating this matter continues.”

In 2016, imports of PET resin from the five countries had a combined value of about $255.3 million. The scope of the investigation includes blends of virgin PET resin and recycled PET resin containing 50 percent or more virgin PET resin content by weight. In addition to polyester used to make textile and apparel products, PET is also a prime ingredient in plastic bottles that in many cases are recycled into polyester fiber.

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The petitioners were manufacturers DAK Americas of Charlotte, N.C.; Indorama Ventures USA of Decatur, Ala., M&G Polymers USA of Houston and Nan Ya Plastics Corp. America of Lake City, S.C. Indorama Ventures was not a petitioner in the Indonesia investigation.

Commerce is scheduled to announce the final determinations in these investigations around mid September. If it determines that these countries were in fact dumping PET, and the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) determines there was injury to the market, then it will issue an antidumping, or AD, determination, resulting in the cash fine. If Commerce doesn’t find that the countries were dumping or the ITC finds there’s been no real injury, the investigations will terminate and no orders will be issued.

The AD law provides U.S. businesses and workers with an internationally accepted mechanism to seek relief from the harmful effects of unfair pricing of imports into the U.S. Commerce currently maintains 432 antidumping and countervailing duty orders that provide relief to U.S. companies and industries impacted by unfair trade.