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(LEAD) U.S. ordered to recalculate antidumping margin of Hyundai Steel products

2018/01/11 20:32

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(ATTN: UPDATES with reaction of Hyundai Steel; Minor edits; ADDS byline and photo)

By Kim Kwang-tae

SEOUL, Jan. 11 (Yonhap) -- A U.S. court ordered the U.S. Commerce Department to recalculate the antidumping margin of Hyundai Steel Co. products in a partial victory for South Korea's second-biggest steelmaker.

Jane A. Restani, a judge of the U.S. Court of International Trade, said in a slip opinion on Wednesday (local time) that the Commerce Department's final results in its antidumping duty investigation of South Korean corrosion-resistant steel products should be remanded.

In 2015, the Commerce Department launched an investigation over the possible sale of corrosion-resistant steel products from South Korea and other countries, claiming they were being sold at less than fair value.

The department calculated a final dumping margin of 47.8 percent for Hyundai's steel products in May 2016 by applying an adverse inference to the facts available (AFA).

It marked a dramatic hike from Jan. 4, 2016, when the commerce department determined a preliminary antidumping duty of 3.51 percent for Hyundai steel products.

This aerial photo provided by Hyundai Steel shows the company's plant in Dangjin, about 120 kilometers of southwest of Seoul. (Yonhap) This aerial photo provided by Hyundai Steel shows the company's plant in Dangjin, about 120 kilometers of southwest of Seoul. (Yonhap)

Hyundai has requested that the court hold that the final determination was unsupported by substantial record evidence and was otherwise not in accordance with the law. Hyundai has also asked that the Commerce Department's determination be remanded for correction of error.

Hyundai alleged that the Commerce Department failed to apply the "special rule" applicable to merchandise with value added after importation to Hyundai's tailor-welded blanks and auto parts.

Still, the court said the department's decision not to apply the "special rule" was reasonable.

The court also said the Commerce Department's application of AFA was reasonable in regards to Hyundai's sales of tailor-welded blanks and auto parts, but unreasonable when it came to Hyundai's sales of skelp, sheets and blanks (SSBs).

SSBs are products created by splitting, shearing or stamping coils of corrosion-resistant steel products.

The court said the Commerce Department's identification of Hyundai's data deficiencies over its tailor-welded blanks and auto parts was timely, and it provided an opportunity to respond. But it did not identify Hyundai's data deficiencies regarding its SSBs in a timely way.

Restani said Hyundai's motion for judgment on the agency record was granted in part and denied in part.

"This matter is remanded for Commerce to provide Hyundai the opportunity to remedy data deficiencies as to SSBs, and to recalculate Hyundai's antidumping margin as appropriate," she said in a slip opinion posted on the court's website.

Hyundai Steel said an antidumping duty could be lowered if the Commerce Department accepts the court's opinion and recalculates the antidumping margin.

"We are reviewing the (slip opinion's) contents and will monitor whether the Commerce Department will appeal the case," a Hyundai Steel official said. He asked not to be identified.

entropy@yna.co.kr

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