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Petitions for the Imposition of Antidumping Duties and Countervailing Duties on Imports of Certain Steel Wheels 12 - 16.5 Inches in Diameter From the People’s Republic of China - Grunfeld, Desiderio, Lebowitz, Silverman & Klestadt LLP

I. Type of Action:  Antidumping Duty (“AD”) and Countervailing Duty (“CVD”): PRC

II.  Product: The scope of this investigation is certain on-the-road steel wheels, and components thereof, for tubeless tires with a nominal wheel diameter of 12 inches to 16.5 inches, regardless of width. Certain on-the-road steel wheels with a wheel diameter of 12 inches to 16.5 inches within the scope are generally for road and highway trailers and other towable equipment, including, inter alia, utility trailers, cargo trailers, horse trailers, boat trailers and recreational trailers. Rims may be entered separately and sold to towable mobile home customers where the rim will be mounted to the wheel hub without a disc. The standard widths of certain on-the-road steel wheels are 4 inches, 4.5 inches, 5 inches, 5.5 inches, 6 inches, and 6.5 inches, but all certain on-the-road steel wheels, regardless of width, are covered by the scope. 

The scope includes rims and discs for certain on-the-road steel wheels, whether imported as an assembly, unassembled, or separately. The scope includes certain on-the-road steel wheels regardless of steel composition, whether cladded or not cladded, whether finished or not finished, and whether coated or uncoated. The scope also includes certain on-the-road steel wheels with discs in either a “hub-piloted” or “stud-piloted” mounting configuration, though the stud-piloted configuration is most common in the size range covered.

All on-the-road wheels sold in the United States must meet Standard 110 or 120 of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, which requires a rim marking, such as the “DOT” symbol, indicating compliance with applicable motor vehicle standards. See 49 C.F.R. § 571.110 and § 571.120. The scope includes certain on-the-road steel wheels imported with or without NHTSA’s required markings. 

Certain on-the-road steel wheels imported as an assembly with a tire mounted on the wheel and/or with a valve stem or rims imported as an assembly with a tire mounted on the rim and/or with a valve stem are included in the scope of this investigation. However, if the steel wheels or rims are imported as an assembly with a tire mounted on the wheel or rim and/or with a valve stem attached, the tire and/or valve stem is not covered by the scope. 

Excluded from this scope are the following: Steel wheels for tube-type tires; such tires use multi piece rims, which are two-piece and three-piece assemblies and require the use of an inner tube. Also excluded from this scope are aluminum wheels and certain on-the-road steel wheels that are coated with chrome. Steel wheels that do not meet Standard 110 or 120 of the NHTSA’s requirements are excluded from the scope.

III.  HTS classifications: Certain steel wheels subject to this investigation are properly classifiable under the following category of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States ("HTSUS"): 8716.90.50.35 which covers the exact product covered by the scope whether entered as an assembled wheel or in components. Certain steel wheels which have had a tire mounted to the wheel prior to importion are classifiable under 8716.90.50.59 (a basket category for both in-scope and out-of-scope trailer wheels with tires). While HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description of the subject merchandise is dispositive.

IV.  Date of Filing: August 8, 2018

V.  Petitioner: Dexstar Wheel ("Dexstar"), a division of Americana Development, Inc. ("ADI"), which is owned and operated by American Kenda Rubber Industrial Co., Ltd.

VI.  Foreign Producers/Exporters:  Please contact our office for a list filed with the petition.

VII.  U.S. Importers named.   Please contact our office for a list filed with the petition.

VIII.  Alleged Dumping Margins (No CVD Margins Listed):  PRC:  29.27-49.89%.

IX.  Comments:

  1. Projected date of ITC Preliminary Conference: August 29, 2018.  Please contact our office for a complete projected schedule for the AD investigation.
  2. The earliest theoretical date for retroactive suspension of liquidation for the AD is October 17, 2018; CVD is August 28, 2018.  Please contact our office for a complete projected schedule for the CVD investigation.
  3. Volume and Value of Imports:  Please contact our office for a summary of the data filed with the petition.
  4. List of Alleged Subsidy Programs:  Please contact our office for a list of alleged subsidy programs.

If you have any questions regarding how this investigation may impact future imports of scope merchandise, or whether a particular product is within the scope of the investigation, please contact one of our attorneys.


 OTEXA:  Announcements

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) seeks comments on a list of products imported from China proposed for additional 10% tariffs. The proposed action would be taken in conjunction with the Section 301 investigation of the acts, policies, and practices of the Government of China related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation. The public comment period has been extended. The deadline for written comments is now September 6, 2018. A public hearing will take place on August 20-23, 2018. See the August 7, 2018 Federal Register Notice for details.


USTR Finalizes Second Tranche of Tariffs on Chinese Products in Response to China's Unfair Trade Practices - U.S. Office of U.S. Trade Representative

Washington, DC – The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) today released a list of approximately $16 billion worth of imports from China that will be subject to a 25 percent additional tariff as part of the U.S. response to China’s unfair trade practices related to the forced transfer of American technology and intellectual property.  This second tranche of additional tariffs under Section 301 follows the first tranche of tariffs on approximately $34 billion of imports from China, which went into effect on July 6. 

The list contains 279 of the original 284 tariff lines that were on a proposed list announced on June 15.  Changes to the proposed list were made after USTR and the interagency Section 301 Committee sought and received written comments and testimony during a two-day public hearing last month. Customs and Border Protection will begin to collect the additional duties on the Chinese imports on August 23.

In March 2018, USTR released the findings of its exhaustive Section 301 investigation that found China’s acts, policies and practices related to technology transfer, intellectual property and innovation are unreasonable and discriminatory and burden U.S. commerce.

Specifically, the Section 301 investigation revealed:

  • China uses joint venture requirements, foreign investment restrictions, and administrative review and licensing processes to require or pressure technology transfer from U.S. companies.
  • China deprives U.S. companies of the ability to set market-based terms in licensing and other technology-related negotiations.
  • China directs and unfairly facilitates the systematic investment in, and acquisition of, U.S. companies and assets to generate large-scale technology transfer.
  • China conducts and supports cyber intrusions into U.S. commercial computer networks to gain unauthorized access to commercially valuable business information.

A formal notice of the $16 billion tariff action will be published shortly in the Federal Register.  As in the case of the first tranche of additional tariffs, the notice will announce a process by which interested persons may request the exclusion of particular products covered by a tariff line subject to the additional duties.


Voiding Inactive Importer of Record Numbers - U.S. Customs & Border Protection

This message is a reminder to the trade community that, in accordance with 19 CFR 24.5(e)
(https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CFR-2012-title19-vol1/pdf/CFR-2012-title19-vol1-sec24-5.pdf), CBP will void any importer identification number in the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) that is deemed to be inactive, i.e., not used for a period of one year and does not have an outstanding transaction to which it must be associated.  

Additional information, including the process by which a voided importer of record may be reinstated, can be found at: 

https://www.cbp.gov/trade/trade-community/outreach-programs/bonds/bond-centralization-program/voided-importer-faq


5 Charged in Multimillion Dollar Counterfeiting Scheme Following ICE HSI Investigation - US Customs & Immigration Service

NEW YORK — Five Queens residents were charged Tuesday pursuant to an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in New York’s Border Enforcement Task Force (BEST). This investigation, worked by HSI special agents and taskforce members from the New York City Police Department (NYPD) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) resulted in the arrest of five individuals conspiring to traffic in more than $70 million worth of counterfeit Nike Air Jordans. Miyuki Suen, Jian Min Huang, Songhua Qu, Kin Lui Chen, and Fangrang Qu are charged with importing hundreds-of-thousands of athletic shoes from China into the United States. Once those shoes arrived, the defendants and other co-conspirators affixed counterfeit Nike-trademarked logos to those shoes in New York, and sold the now-counterfeit Air Jordans in the United States.

“These five individuals are alleged to have been a part of a large scale counterfeiting scheme, importing nearly a half million pairs of knock-off Nike sneakers,” said Angel M. Melendez, special agent in charge for HSI New York. “These counterfeiting networks can be both detrimental to our economy and threaten our national security, and HSI will continue to take every measure in investigating and dismantling these organizations.”

“The five defendants in this case allegedly counterfeited over $70 million in fake Nike shoes and sold them to buyers on the U.S. market. I commend our law enforcement partners for helping to bring today’s charges, which send a clear message to would-be counterfeiters: ‘Just don’t do it,’” said Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York,

As alleged in the complaint, from at least in or about January 2016 up to and including in or about July 2018, Suen, Huang, Songhua Qu, Kin Lui Chen, and Fangrang Qu, imported at least 42 shipping containers holding an estimated more than 380,000 pairs of sneakers from China. These sneakers were manufactured to resemble Nike Air Jordans. Once these shoes arrived, Suen, Huang, Songhua Qu, Chen, and Fangrang Qu, added trademarked logos to the shoes, rendering them counterfeit. Suen, Huang, Songhua Qu, Kin Lui Chen, and Fangrang Qu then stored the counterfeit Nike Air Jordans in multiple storage units and warehouses in New York City and elsewhere.

On August 7, 2018, pursuant to court-authorized search warrants, federal law enforcement agents conducted searches of a warehouse, storage units, and a residence related to this scheme, and found thousands of counterfeit shoes, counterfeit trademarks, and machinery to finish counterfeit shoes. The estimated loss attributable to the defendants’ efforts amounts to more than $70 million.

Suen, 43, Huang, 42, and Chen, 53, of New York, New York and Songhua Qu, 54, and Fangrang Qu, 31, of Hicksville, New York, are each charged with one count of conspiring to traffic in counterfeit goods, and one count of trafficking in counterfeit goods. Each defendant faces a maximum potential sentence of 20 years in prison.

The maximum potential sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendants will be determined by the judge. This case is being handled by the SDNY’s General Crimes Unit. The charges contained in the Complaint are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.


Project Dakota Flyer Sentences Announced - US Department of Justice

Twelve Men, Five Women, and Two Pawn Shops Sentenced for Lacey Act, Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act Violations

United States Attorney Ron Parsons announced that 19 defendants from Project Dakota Flyer – one of the largest wildlife trafficking investigations in the Midwest in recent history – have been sentenced.

Nine men from South Dakota, five women from South Dakota, one man from North Dakota, one man from Iowa, one man from Idaho, and two pawn shops in South Dakota, convicted of various Lacey Act, Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act violations, have been sentenced in United States District Court by Chief Judge Jeffrey L. Viken, U.S. District Judge Roberto A. Lange, U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark A. Moreno, U.S. Magistrate Judge William D. Gerdes, and U.S. Magistrate Judge Daneta L. Wollmann.
U.S. Attorney Parsons praised the sentences: “This investigation has demonstrated the breadth of the illegal black market for eagle and other migratory bird parts.  It is our goal to completely eliminate the unauthorized killing and selling of bald eagles, golden eagles, and other protected species.  Importantly, nothing in this investigation was done to infringe upon traditional Native American use of eagle parts for cultural or spiritual purposes.  We are very sensitive to the Native American culture and religious practices that use and honor the eagle, and we want them to be able to continue to do that in a lawful and culturally appropriate manner.”
These convictions stem from incidents beginning in 2014, when the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service initiated an undercover operation, Project Dakota Flyer, focusing on the unlawful trafficking of protected migratory birds, primarily bald and golden eagles.  The operation utilized undercover techniques to purchase eagle and other protected bird parts from 51 suspects over a 19-month period.  The purchases occurred in South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Nebraska, Iowa, and in some cases over the internet.

“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service protects our nation’s wildlife here and abroad,” said Edward Grace, Acting Assistant Director of the Office of Law Enforcement for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  “We initiated Operation Project Dakota Flyer to stop the unlawful trafficking in protected migratory birds with a particular emphasis in bald and golden eagles.  The work of our special agents and forensic scientists revealed over 35 species of birds, from every continent except Antarctica, were trafficked.  This operation, which began in America’s heartland, illustrates how wildlife trafficking is a global crisis."

Restitution for the loss of the eagles and other migratory birds was sought by the United States in these cases where it could be proved that a deceased bird was trafficked as part of the illegal activity.  Following extensive expert testimony, the Courts adopted a restitution value for immature eagles at $5,000 and adult eagles at $10,000.

These cases were investigated by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Eric Kelderman and Meghan N. Dilges prosecuted the cases.
 
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