Ex-Tech Joins Other Domestic Sheet Producers in Trade Petitions Against Oman, South Korea and Mexico
WASHINGTON, July 9, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Today, three major U.S. plastics extruders – Advanced Extrusion Inc., Ex-Tech Plastics, Inc., and Multi-Plastics Extrusions, Inc. – filed a petition alleging that imports of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) sheet from Oman, Korea, and Mexico are being sold at less than fair value in the United States and causing material injury to the domestic industry. The petitioning domestic producers asked the U.S. government to investigate the dumping and injury, and to impose antidumping duties on the imports of PET sheet from the subject countries.
The petition alleges that producers in each of the three countries are dumping PET sheet in the U.S. market at sizeable margins:
|Country||Dumping Margins Alleged|
The petition was filed concurrently with the United States Department of Commerce (“Commerce Department”) and the United States International Trade Commission (“USITC”). The filing is in response to large volumes of aggressively-priced PET sheet imports from Oman, Korea, and Mexico that have undercut U.S. producer prices and caused significant financial harm to the domestic industry as a result. Unfairly-traded PET sheet from Oman, Korea, and Mexico surged into the U.S. market in the first quarter of 2019, increasing their market share even further and displacing U.S. producer market share as a result.
As a result of increasing volumes of low-priced imports, the condition of the domestic industry has suffered. U.S. producers have experienced low capacity utilization, declining shipment volumes, and deteriorating financial performance as a result of the lost sales and price depression caused by PET sheet imports from Oman, Korea, and Mexico. Foreign producers of PET sheet also continue to threaten the domestic industry with additional injury due to their massive and growing production capacity and extensive unused capacity that will be used to export large volumes of unfairly low-priced product to the United States. The injury to the domestic PET sheet industry is likely to continue if duties are not imposed to offset these unfair trading practices.
“Domestic PET sheet producers have been hit hard by increasing volumes of dumped imports from Oman, Korea, and Mexico. These imports have penetrated the U.S. market with unfairly low prices, forcing domestic producers to reduce their prices to unsustainable levels or causing them to lose sales altogether,” said Paul Rosenthal of Kelley Drye & Warren LLP, counsel for the petitioning companies. “Petitioners have filed this petition to obtain the trade relief necessary to continue producing PET sheet in the United States.”
Antidumping duties: Antidumping duties are intended to offset the amount by which a product is sold at less than fair value, or “dumped,” in the United States. The margin of dumping is calculated by the Commerce Department. Estimated duties in the amount of the dumping are collected from importers at the time of importation. The USITC, an independent agency, will determine whether the domestic industry is materially injured or threatened with material injury by reason of the unfairly-traded imports.
Next steps: The Commerce Department will determine whether to initiate the antidumping duty investigations within 20 days of today’s filing of the petitions and the USITC will reach a preliminary determination of material injury or threat of material injury within 45 days of today’s filing. The entire investigative process will take approximately one year, with final determinations of dumping and injury likely occurring in mid-2020.
Product description: The product covered by the petition is PET sheet. “PET” is short for polyethylene terephthalate, a thermoplastic polyester. The PET sheet that is the subject of the petition is equal to or greater than 7 mil (0.007 inches or 177.8 µm) and not exceeding 45 mil (0.045 inches or 1143 µm) in thickness. PET sheet is a semi-rigid flat-rolled material that is made from PET through an extrusion process. PET sheet is sold in rolls to downstream end users – primarily thermoformers – that use PET sheet to manufacture a wide variety of rigid (as opposed to flexible) food, beverage, and retail packaging. Major end uses for PET sheet include food trays, carry-out containers, fruit and vegetable trays and clamshell containers, bottle preforms, drinking cups, medical trays, paint tray liners, consumer packaging, packaging for electro-static sensitive devices (such as integrated computer circuits), and the like.
Petitioning companies: The petitioning companies are Advanced Extrusion Inc. of Rogers, MN, Ex-Tech Plastics, Inc. of Richmond, IL, and Multi-Plastics Extrusions, Inc. of Hazelton, PA, represented by Kelley Drye & Warren LLP.
SOURCE Kelley Drye & Warren LLP