New Trade Case on Imports of Steel Wheels from China

New US antidumping (AD) and countervailing (CVD) duty investigations were filed on August 8, 2018 by Dexstar Wheel, a division of Americana Development, Inc. (petitioner) against imports of certain steel wheels from China.

The merchandise covered by the petition includes 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.  The subject wheels are generally for road and highway trailers and other towable equipment, including, utility trailers, cargo trailers, horse trailers, boat trailers and recreational trailers.  The full scope of the merchandise covered is set forth below.

The petition includes AD (less than fair value) allegations against China and CVD (unfair subsidy) allegations against China.

The Department of Commerce and the International Trade Commission (ITC) will next determine whether to launch AD and/or CVD duty and injury investigations, respectively, on these products. Commerce will be responsible for calculating the ultimate AD/CVD margins on the imports, while the ITC will conduct a concurrent investigation to determine if the imports are injuring the U.S. industry. If Commerce finds dumping or unfair subsidization in its preliminary determinations, currently scheduled for November 1, 2018 (CVD) and January 15, 2019 (AD), importers will be charged the calculated duties upon the products’ entry in the U.S. market.

There are strict statutory deadlines associated with these proceedings and affected companies are advised to prepare as soon as possible. If this product is of interest to you, please let us know  so that we can provide you with additional information as it becomes available.

The following are key facts about this trade case:

Petitioner: Dexstar Wheel, a division of Americana Development, Inc.

Foreign Producers/Exporters and US Importers:  Please contact us for a listing of individual companies named in the petition.

Alleged AD and CVD margins:  Petitioner has alleged the following AD margins:

  • China –   from 29.27 percent to 49.89 percent

Petition has alleged CVD margins for China above de minimis.

Merchandise covered by the scope of the case:

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.

Certain on-the-road steel wheels subject to this investigation are properly classifiable under the following category of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (“HTSUS”): 8716.90.5035 which covers the exact product covered by the scope whether entered as an assembled wheel or in components. Wheels entered with a tire mounted on them are believed entered under HTS 8716.90.50.59 (Trailers and semi-trailers; other vehicles, not mechanically propelled, parts, wheels, other, wheels with other tires) (a category that will be broader than what is covered by the scope). While the HTSUS subheading is provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description of the subject merchandise is dispositive.

If you have any questions regarding the content of this alert, please contact Mark Ludwikowski (mludwikowski@clarkhill.com ; 202-640-6680), Kevin Williams (kwilliams@clarkhill.com; 312-985-5907 or another member of Clark Hill's International Trade Practice Group.