For Immediate Release
March 4, 2020
Contact: Office of Public Affairs
WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Department of Commerce announced an affirmative preliminary circumvention ruling regarding imports of steel concrete reinforcing bar (rebar) from Mexico.
Specifically, Commerce preliminarily determined that imports of otherwise straight rebar that is bent at one or both ends (hooked or bent rebar), and produced and/or exported to the United States by Deacero S.A.P.I. de C.V (Deacero), circumvent the existing antidumping duty (AD) order, which covers rebar from Mexico that is straight or in coil form.
As a result of this ruling, Commerce will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to collect AD cash deposits on imports of hooked or bent rebar produced and/or exported by Deacero, at the applicable rate for in-scope rebar. Cash deposits will be required for any future imports and unliquidated entries since October 18, 2019 (the date on which Commerce initiated this circumvention inquiry), unless the importer certifies that the hooked rebar has been sold in connection with specific, identified construction project and produced according to an engineer’s structural design, consistent with industry standards.
Under U.S. law, circumvention exists when (among other things) imported merchandise subject to an existing AD order undergoes a minor alteration that brings the product outside the scope of the order.
This inquiry was initiated in response to a request from U.S. domestic producers of rebar: the Rebar Trade Action Coalition, whose members are Nucor Corporation; Gerdau Ameristeel U.S., Inc.; Commercial Metals Company; Cascade Steel Rolling Mills, Inc.; Byer Steel Group, Inc.; and Steel Dynamics, Inc.
The strict enforcement of U.S. trade law is a primary focus of the Trump Administration. To date, the Trump Administration has issued 45 preliminary or final affirmative determinations in anti-circumvention inquiries – this is a 200 percent increase from the number of such determinations made during the comparable period in the previous administration.
The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Enforcement and Compliance unit within the International Trade Administration is responsible for vigorously enforcing U.S. trade law and does so through an impartial, transparent process that abides by international rules and is based on factual evidence provided on the record.