Certain Welded Carbon Steel Standard Pipes and Tubes From India: Initiation of Circumvention Inquiry on the Antidumping Duty Order

CourtInternational Trade Administration
Record Number2022-03661
Published date22 February 2022
Federal Register, Volume 87 Issue 35 (Tuesday, February 22, 2022)
[Federal Register Volume 87, Number 35 (Tuesday, February 22, 2022)]
                [Notices]
                [Pages 9571-9573]
                From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
                [FR Doc No: 2022-03661]
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                DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
                International Trade Administration
                [A-533-502]
                Certain Welded Carbon Steel Standard Pipes and Tubes From India:
                Initiation of Circumvention Inquiry on the Antidumping Duty Order
                AGENCY: Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration,
                Department of Commerce.
                SUMMARY: In response to a request from Bull Moose Tube Company (Bull
                Moose), Nucor Tubular Products Inc. (Nucor Tubular), Wheatland Tube
                Company (Wheatland) and the United Steel, Paper and Forestry, Rubber,
                Manufacturing, Energy, Allied Industrial and Service Workers
                International Union, AFL-CIO, CLC (the USW) (collectively, the domestic
                interested parties), the Department of Commerce (Commerce) is
                initiating a country-wide circumvention inquiry to determine whether
                imports of certain welded carbon steel standard pipes and tubes (pipe
                and tube), which are completed in Oman and the United Arab Emirates
                (UAE) from hot-rolled steel (HRS) produced in India, are circumventing
                the antidumping duty (AD) order on pipe and tube from India.
                DATES: Applicable February 22, 2022.
                FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jacob Keller, AD/CVD Operations,
                Office I, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade
                Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue
                NW, Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-4849.
                SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
                Background
                 On December 16, 2021, pursuant to section 781(b) of the Tariff Act
                of 1930, as amended (the Act) and 19 CFR 351.226(c) domestic interested
                parties filed a circumvention inquiry request alleging that pipe and
                tube completed in Oman and the UAE using HRS manufactured in India are
                circumventing the Order \1\ and, accordingly, should be included within
                the scope of the Order.\2\ On December 24, 2021, Al Jazeera Steel
                Products Co. SAOG (Al Jazeera) filed opposition comments in response to
                the domestic interested parties' request.\3\ On January 5, 2022, the
                domestic interested parties filed rebuttal comments regarding Al
                Jazeera's opposition comments.\4\ On January 11, 2022, Universal Tube
                and Plastic Industries, Ltd.; KHK Scaffolding and Formwork LLC; and THL
                Pipe and Tube Industries LLC (collectively, Universal) filed opposition
                comments.\5\ On January 13, 2022, Conares Metal Supply Limited
                (Conares) filed opposition comments.\6\
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                 \1\ See Antidumping Duty Order; Certain Welded Carbon Steel
                Standard Pipes and Tubes from India, 51 FR 17384 (May 12, 1986)
                (Order).
                 \2\ See Domestic Interested Parties' Letter, ``Certain Welded
                Carbon Steel Standard Pipes and Tubes from India: Request for an
                Anti-Circumvention Inquiry,'' dated December 16, 2021.
                 \3\ See Al Jazeera's Letter, ``Welded Carbon Steel Standard Pipe
                from India; Al Jazeera Comments on Petitioners' Request for Anti-
                circumvention Inquiry,'' dated December 24, 2021.
                 \4\ See Domestic Interested Parties' Letter, ``Certain Welded
                Carbon Steel Standard Pipes and Tubes from India: Response to Al
                Jazeera's Comments on Request for Anti-Circumvention Inquiry,''
                dated January 5, 2022.
                 \5\ See Universal's Letter, ``Certain Welded Carbon Steel
                Standard Pipes and Tubes from India--Response to Domestic Interested
                Parties' Request for an Anti-Circumvention Inquiry,'' dated January
                11, 2022.
                 \6\ See Conares' Letter, ``Welded Carbon Steel Standard Pipe
                from India: Comments on Anti-Circumvention Inquiry,'' dated January
                13, 2022.
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                 On January 6, 2022, we issued a supplemental questionnaire to the
                domestic interested parties regarding their circumvention inquiry
                request.\7\ On January 18, 2022, the domestic interested parties filed
                their response to our supplemental questionnaire.\8\ On January 24 and
                25, 2022, Universal, Ajmal Steel Tubes and Pipes Ind., LLC, and K.D
                Industries Inc. (UAE Producers), and Conares filed additional
                opposition comments, respectively.\9\
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                 \7\ See Commerce's Letter, ``Anti-Circumvention Inquiry of
                Certain Welded Carbon Steel Standard Pipe and Tube from India:
                Supplemental Questionnaire,'' dated January 6, 2022.
                 \8\ See Domestic Interested Parties' Letter, ``Certain Welded
                Carbon Steel Standard Pipes and Tubes from India: Response to
                Supplemental Questionnaire,'' dated January 18, 2022.
                 \9\ See UAE Producers' Letter, ``Certain Welded Carbon Steel
                Standard Pipes and Tubes from India--Additional Information to
                Support a Rejection of an Anti-Circumvention Inquiry Request,''
                dated January 14, 2022; see also Conares' Letter, ``Welded Carbon
                Steel Standard Pipe from India: Rebuttal and Comments on Domestic
                Interested Parties' Supplemental Response,'' dated January 25, 2022.
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                 On January 11, 2022, we extended the deadline to initiate these
                circumvention inquiries by 15 days, in accordance with 19 CFR
                351.226(d)(1).\10\ On January 28,
                [[Page 9572]]
                2022, we extended, for good cause, the deadline to initiate by an
                additional 15 days in accordance with 19 CFR 351.302(b).\11\
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                 \10\ See Memoranda, ``Certain Welded Steel Carbon Standard Pipes
                and Tubes from India: Extension of Time to Determine Whether to
                Initiate Anti-Circumvention Inquiry,'' dated January 11, 2022; and
                ``Certain Welded Steel Carbon Standard Pipes and Tubes from India:
                Revised Extension of Time to Determine Whether to Initiate Anti-
                Circumvention Inquiry,'' dated January 12, 2022.
                 \11\ See Memorandum, ``Certain Welded Carbon Steel Standard
                Pipes and Tubes from India: Extension of Time to Determine Whether
                to Initiate Anti-Circumvention Inquiry,'' dated January 28, 2022.
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                Scope of the Order
                 The products covered by the Order include certain welded carbon
                steel standard pipes and tubes with an outside diameter of 0.375 inch
                or more but not over 16 inches. These products are commonly referred to
                in the industry as standard pipes and tubes produced to various
                American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM) specifications, most
                notably A-53, A-120, or A-135. The antidumping duty order on certain
                welded carbon steel standard pipes and tubes from India, published on
                May 12, 1986, included standard scope language which used the import
                classification system as defined by Tariff Schedules of the United
                States, Annotated (TSUSA).
                 The United States developed a system of tariff classification based
                on the international harmonized system of customs nomenclature. On
                January 1, 1989, the U.S. tariff schedules were fully converted from
                the TSUSA to the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS). See, e.g., Certain
                Welded Carbon Steel Standard Pipes and Tubes from India; Preliminary
                Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Reviews, 56 FR 26650, 26651
                (June 10, 1991). As a result of this transition, the scope language we
                used in the 1991 Federal Register notice is slightly different from the
                scope language of the original final determination and antidumping duty
                order.
                 Until January 1, 1989, such merchandise was classifiable under item
                numbers 610.3231, 610.3234, 610.3241, 610.3242, 610.3243, 610.3252,
                610.3254, 610.3256, 610.3258, and 610.4925 of the TSUSA. This
                merchandise is currently classifiable under HTS subheadings
                7306.30.1000, 7306.30.5025, 7306.30.5032, 7306.30.5040, 7306.30.5055,
                7306.30.5085, 7306.30.5090. As with the TSUSA item numbers, the HTS
                subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes.
                 The written product description remains dispositive.
                Merchandise Subject to the Circumvention Inquiry
                 This circumvention inquiry covers pipe and tube completed in Oman
                and the UAE using India-origin HRS and subsequently exported from Oman
                and the UAE to the United States.
                Initiation of Circumvention Inquiry
                 Section 351.226(d) of Commerce's regulations states that if
                Commerce determines that a request for a circumvention inquiry
                satisfies the requirements of 19 CFR 351.226(c), then Commerce ``will
                accept the request and initiate a circumvention inquiry.'' Section
                351.226(c)(1) of Commerce's regulations, in turn, requires that each
                circumvention inquiry request allege ``that the elements necessary for
                a circumvention determination under section 781 of the Act exist'' and
                be ``accompanied by information reasonably available to the interested
                party supporting these allegations.''
                 Section 781(b)(1) of the Act provides that Commerce may find
                circumvention of an AD order when merchandise of the same class or kind
                subject to the order is completed or assembled in a foreign country
                other than the country to which the order applies. In conducting a
                circumvention inquiry, under section 781(b)(1) of the Act, Commerce
                relies on the following criteria: (A) Merchandise imported into the
                United States is of the same class or kind as any merchandise produced
                in a foreign country that is the subject of an antidumping or
                countervailing duty order or finding; (B) before importation into the
                United States, such imported merchandise is completed or assembled in
                another foreign country from merchandise which is subject to the order
                or merchandise which is produced in the foreign country that is subject
                to the order; (C) the process of assembly or completion in the foreign
                country referred to in section (B) is minor or insignificant; (D) the
                value of the merchandise produced in the foreign country to which the
                AD or countervailing duty order applies is a significant portion of the
                total value of the merchandise exported to the United States; and (E)
                the administering authority determines that action is appropriate to
                prevent evasion of such order or finding.
                 In determining whether the process of assembly or completion in a
                third country is minor or insignificant under section 781(b)(1)(C) of
                the Act, section 781(b)(2) of the Act directs Commerce to consider: (A)
                The level of investment in the foreign country; (B) the level of
                research and development in the foreign country; (C) the nature of the
                production process in the foreign country; (D) the extent of production
                facilities in the foreign country; and (E) whether or not the value of
                processing performed in the foreign country represents a small
                proportion of the value of the merchandise imported into the United
                States. However, no single factor, by itself, controls Commerce's
                determination of whether the process of assembly or completion in a
                third country is minor or insignificant.\12\ Accordingly, it is
                Commerce's practice to evaluate each of these five factors as they
                exist in the third country, depending on the totality of the
                circumstances of the particular circumvention inquiry.\13\
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                 \12\ See Statement of Administrative Action accompanying the
                Uruguay Round Agreements Act (SAA), H.R. Doc. No. 103-316 (1994) at
                893.
                 \13\ See Uncovered Innerspring Units from the People's Republic
                of China: Final Affirmative Determination of Circumvention of the
                Antidumping Duty Order, 83 FR 65626 (December 21, 2018), and
                accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum at 4.
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                 In addition, section 781(b)(3) of the Act sets forth additional
                factors to consider in determining whether to include merchandise
                assembled or completed in a third country within the scope of an
                antidumping or countervailing duty order. Specifically, Commerce shall
                take into account such factors as: (A) The pattern of trade, including
                sourcing patterns; (B) whether the manufacturer or exporter of the
                merchandise is affiliated with the person who, in the third country,
                uses the merchandise to complete or assemble the merchandise which is
                subsequently imported into the United States; and (C) whether imports
                of the merchandise into the third country have increased after the
                initiation of the investigation that resulted in the issuance of such
                order or finding.
                 Based on our analysis of the domestic interested parties'
                circumvention request, Commerce determines that the domestic interested
                parties have satisfied the criteria under 19 CFR 351.226(c) to warrant
                the initiation of a circumvention inquiry of the Order. For a full
                discussion of the basis for our decision to initiate this circumvention
                inquiry, see the Circumvention Initiation Memo.\14\ As explained in the
                Circumvention Initiation Memo, the information provided by domestic
                interested parties warrants initiating
                [[Page 9573]]
                this circumvention inquiry on a country-wide basis. Commerce has taken
                this approach in prior circumvention inquiries, where the facts
                warranted initiation on a country-wide basis.\15\
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                 \14\ See Memorandum, ``Certain Welded Carbon Steel Standard
                Pipes and Tubes from India: Initiation of Circumvention Inquiries on
                the Antidumping Duty Order,'' dated concurrently with, and hereby
                adopted by, this notice (Circumvention Initiation Memo). This memo
                is a public document and available electronically online via ACCESS.
                 \15\ See, e.g., Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from
                the Republic of Korea and Taiwan: Initiation of Anti-Circumvention
                Inquiries on the Antidumping Duty and Countervailing Duty Orders, 83
                FR 37785 (August 2, 2018); Carbon Steel Butt-Weld Pipe Fittings from
                the People's Republic of China: Initiation of Anti-Circumvention
                Inquiry on the Antidumping Duty Order, 82 FR 40556, 40560 (August
                25, 2017) (stating at initiation that Commerce would evaluate the
                extent to which a country-wide finding applicable to all exports
                might be warranted); and Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products
                from the People's Republic of China: Initiation of Anti-
                Circumvention Inquiries on the Antidumping Duty and Countervailing
                Duty Orders, 81 FR 79454, 79458 (November 14, 2016) (stating at
                initiation that Commerce would evaluate the extent to which a
                country-wide finding applicable to all exports might be warranted).
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                 Consistent with the approach in the prior circumvention inquiries
                that were initiated on a country-wide basis, Commerce intends to issue
                questionnaires to solicit information from producers and exporters in
                Oman and the UAE concerning their shipments of pipe and tube made from
                India-origin HRS to the United States. A company's failure to respond
                completely to Commerce's requests for information may result in the
                application of partial or total facts available, pursuant to section
                776(a) of the Act, which may include adverse inferences, pursuant to
                section 776(b) of the Act.
                Suspension of Liquidation
                 Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.226(l)(1), Commerce will notify U.S. Customs
                and Border Protection (CBP) of the initiation and direct CBP to
                continue the suspension of liquidation of entries of products subject
                to the circumvention inquiry that were already subject to the
                suspension of liquidation under the Order. Should Commerce issue
                preliminary or final circumvention determinations, Commerce will follow
                the suspension of liquidation rules under 19 CFR 351.226(l)(2)-(4).
                Notification to Interested Parties
                 In accordance with 19 CFR 351.226(d) and section 781(b) of the Act,
                Commerce determines that the domestic interested parties' request for
                this circumvention inquiry satisfies the requirements of 19 CFR
                351.226(c). Accordingly, Commerce is notifying all interested parties
                of the initiation of this circumvention inquiry to determine whether
                certain imports of pipe and tube, completed in and exported from Oman
                and the UAE using HRS inputs manufactured in India, are circumventing
                the Order. In addition, we have included a description of the products
                that are the subject of this inquiry, and an explanation of the reasons
                for Commerce's decision to initiate this inquiry as provided above and
                in the accompanying Circumvention Initiation Memo.\16\ In accordance
                with 19 CFR 351.226(e)(2), Commerce intends to issue its final
                circumvention determination within 300 days from the date of
                publication of the notice of initiation of a circumvention inquiry in
                the Federal Register.
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                 \16\ See Circumvention Initiation Memo.
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                 This notice is published in accordance with section 781(b) of the
                Act and 19 CFR 351.226(d)(1)(ii).
                 Dated: February 14, 2022.
                Lisa W. Wang,
                Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
                Appendix
                List of Topics Discussed in the Circumvention Initiation Memo
                I. Summary
                II. Background
                III. Scope of the Order
                IV. Merchandise Subject to the Circumvention Inquiry
                V. Statutory and Regulatory Framework for Circumvention Inquiries
                VI. Statutory Analysis for the Circumvention Inquiry
                VII. Comments Opposing the Initiation of a Circumvention Inquiry
                VIII. Country-Wide Circumvention Inquiries
                IX. Recommendation
                [FR Doc. 2022-03661 Filed 2-18-22; 8:45 am]
                BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
                

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