The U.S. Department of Commerce Announces Preliminary Antidumping Duties on Hydrofluorocarbon Blends Imported from China

Feb 04, 2016, 11:08 ET from The American Hydrofluorocarbon Coalition

WASHINGTON, Feb. 4, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- The U.S. Department of Commerce has published a preliminary determination finding that imports of Hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) Blends used in applications such as air conditioning and refrigeration are being dumped in the U.S. market.

On June 25, 2015, the American Hydrofluorocarbon Coalition and its members filed an antidumping duty petition charging that certain HFC blends and components imported from China were being sold at less than fair value.

The investigation was initiated by the Department of Commerce on July 15, 2015.  Having investigated the Chinese producers and exporters of HFC blends, the Commerce Department has preliminarily determined that the imports are being dumped in the U.S. market.

As a result, antidumping duties ranging from 91.99 percent to 210.46 percent are being imposed on imports HFC blends from China. A final determination will be made by the Commerce Department in June 2016.

In addition, the Commerce Department found that imports from certain Chinese producers had surged into the U.S. market after the antidumping petition was filed. The HFC Coalition provided information showing that certain Chinese producers and importers were attempting to build inventories of unfairly traded HFC blends in the U.S. market before antidumping duties would be applied. Based on this evidence, the Commerce Department concluded that "critical circumstances" exist with respect to imports from some of the Chinese producers. As a result, antidumping duties will be applied on these products retroactively. Imports from certain producers will be subject to antidumping duties on all imports after November 1, 2015.

The HFC blends covered by this investigation include refrigerants such as R-410A, R-404A and other blends, as well as single component HFCs, such as R-32 and R-125.  These products are used in air-conditioning and refrigeration systems. The HFC Coalition petitioned for relief under the antidumping law in response to large and increasing volumes of low-priced imports from China. Imports from China have increased by an astonishing 80 percent from 2012 to 2014, and continued to increase even after the antidumping petition was filed. As a result, U.S. manufacturers are losing market share and prices are rapidly falling.

The preliminary Commerce Department finding means that antidumping duties will now be applied to all imports of HFC blends and, in some cases, duties will be applied retroactively to imports that arrived since November 1, 2015. The HFC Coalition believes that the antidumping duty rates are fully justified by the evidence. Most importantly, the imposition of these antidumping duties is a positive step to restore conditions of fair trade in this market. Unless the unfairly traded imports are eliminated from the U.S. market, price levels will not sustain U.S. operations and employment.  Without an adequate return on investment, the U.S. industry will be unable to maintain current production levels or to develop the next generation of refrigerants.

Media Contact:
James Cannon

SOURCE The American Hydrofluorocarbon Coalition