Investigation Determines Chinese Companies Evaded Antidumping and Countervailing Orders

December 27th, 2018 by Jordan Scott

In February 2018, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) began an investigation into Chinese companies Sun Bright International Corp. and Fair Importing Corp., over issues pertaining to antidumping (AD) and countervailing duties (CVD). Sun Bright produces aluminum profiles for doors, windows and other uses. Conducted under the Enforce and Protect Act (EAPA), the investigation has now determined that both companies failed to declare that merchandise was subject to AD/CVD orders, while making no related payments on aluminum extrusions imported into the U.S. from China.

In a notice addressed to Alan Price of the Aluminum Extrusions Fair Trade Committee (AEFTC), Sun Bright International Corp. chairman of the board Ping Lam, and Fair Importing Corp. owner Jenny Hue Ho, officials for CBP say the agency has substantial evidence to support allegations claiming that the two companies evaded duties by transshipment through Malaysia. The AEFTC provided an email exchange between a Chinese freight forwarder and a foreign investor as evidence.

“[Qingdao ZHV International Logistics Co.] (ZHV) stated in the email exchange that it ships products from Foshan, China, to Port Kelang, Malaysia, where it changes the container and then re-exports the product to third countries,” reads the notice. “As part of the email exchange, ZHV responded to the investigator’s request for examples of successful transshipments by providing a certificate of origin that indicated Malaysia as the country of origin for a shipment of covered merchandise. Using public manifest data, the AEFTC linked the certificate of origin to a shipment of aluminum extrusions exported by CK Aluminium from Port Kelang, Malaysia, and imported into the United States by ‘Sunbright Industry’ in New York.”

According to the notice, AEFTC alleged that CK Aluminium’s facility in Malaysia does not produce aluminum extrusions. CBP officials in Malaysia visited the facility and came to the same conclusion, finding “reasonable suspicion” that the companies evaded AD/CVD orders.

“Substantial evidence on the record of this investigation supports a determination that the importers’ entries of aluminum extrusions from their supplier, CK Aluminium, were made by material false statements or acts, and material omissions, that resulted in the avoidance of applicable cash deposits required under AD order A-570-967 and CVD order C-570-968.” Specifically, the aluminum extrusions imported and declared to be of Malaysian origin, actually originated from China, but transshipped through Malaysia, the notice suggests. Meanwhile, importers failed to declare that the merchandise was subject to AD and CVD orders on aluminum extrusions from China. “ … as a result, no cash deposits were collected on the merchandise,” reads the notice’s final determination.

Going forward, CBP will require both companies to pay the applicable cash deposits prior to releasing extrusions into the U.S. market.

Jeff Henderson, president of the Aluminum Extruders Council thanked CBP for the outcome before condemning the actions of both Chinese companies.

“Transshippers like these companies should know we will continue to locate and bring to justice those that seek to evade U.S. trade laws and the AEC’s aluminum extrusion orders against China,” he says. “Those importers and exporters that seek to undermine our orders will be caught and punished for circumventing U.S. law. Importers need to keep in mind that they will be held responsible for unpaid duties and possible fines.”

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