New Trade Case on Imports of Certain Walk-Behind Snow Throwers From China

A new U.S. antidumping (“AD”) and countervailing (“CVD”) duty petition was filed on March 30 by MTD Products, Inc. against imports of certain walk-behind snow throwers (also known as snow blowers) from the People’s Republic of China.

The merchandise covered by this petition is certain snow throwers, whether finished or unfinished, whether assembled or unassembled, and whether containing any additional add-on components to add functionalities in addition to snow throwing. Snow throwers are rotary-powered snow throwing machines that can be either self-propelled or non-self-propelled (i.e. “pushed”). Snow throwers subject to the proposed scope of the investigation typically have a clearing width of 12 to 60 inches and are manually controlled by an operator walking behind the snow thrower and utilize an auger and rotating impeller blade. They are generally powered by a spark-ignition, single or multiple cylinder, air-cooled, internal combustion engine with horizontal power take-off shafts (“gas-powered engine”). For a full description of the scope of the petition, please see the Scope section below.

The petition includes AD (less than fair value) and CVD (unfair subsidies) allegations against China. The Department of Commerce (“DOC”) and the International Trade Commission (“ITC”) will conduct the investigations. Within the next 45 days, the ITC will determine if there is a reasonable indication that the imports are injuring the U.S. industry. If the ITC finds that standard is met, then the cases will move to the DOC which will calculate the preliminary AD duty margins.

The DOC’s preliminary determinations are currently scheduled for June 23 (CVD) and Sept. 7 (AD), which are the dates when importers will be required to deposit the calculated duties upon the products’ entry into 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: MTD Products, Inc.

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

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

  • China: a calculated AD margin of 87.71 percent ad valorem and a CVD margin above de minimis.

Merchandise covered by the scope of the case:

The merchandise covered by this investigation consists of gas-powered, walk-behind snow throwers (also known as snow blowers), which are snow moving machines that are powered by internal combustion engines and primarily pedestrian-controlled. The scope of the investigation covers certain snow throwers, whether self-propelled or non-self-propelled, whether finished or unfinished, whether assembled or unassembled, and whether containing any additional features that provide for functions in addition to snow throwing.

Walk-behind snow throwers subject to the scope of this investigation are powered by internal combustion engines which typically spark ignition, single or multiple cylinders, and air-cooled with power take-off shafts.

For purposes of this investigation, an unfinished and/or unassembled snow thrower means at a minimum, a sub-assembly comprised of an engine, auger housing (i.e., intake frame), and an auger (or “auger paddle”) packaged or imported together. An intake frame is the portion of the snow thrower – typically of aluminum or steel – that houses and protects an operator from a rotating auger and is the intake point for the snow. Importation of the subassembly whether or not accompanied by, or attached to, additional components including, but not limited to, handle(s), impeller(s), chute(s), track tread(s), or wheel(s) constitutes an unfinished snow thrower for purposes of this investigation. The inclusion in a third-country of any components other than the snow thrower sub-assembly does not remove the snow thrower from the scope. A snow thrower is within the scope of this investigation regardless of the origin of its engine.

Specifically excluded is merchandise covered by the scope of the antidumping and countervailing duty orders on Certain Vertical Shaft Engines Between 225cc and 999cc, and Parts Thereof from the People’s Republic of China, 86 Fed. Reg. 12,623, 86 Fed. Reg. 12,619 (Dep’t Commerce Mar. 4, 2021).

The snow throwers subject to this investigation are typically entered under Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) subheading 8430.20.0060. Certain parts of snow throwers subject to this investigation may also enter under HTSUS 8407.90.9040, 8407.90.9060, 8431.49.9090, and 8431.49.9095. The HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes only, and the written description of the merchandise under investigation 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); William Sjoberg (wsjoberg@clarkhill.com; 202-772-0924), Matthew Goldstein (mgoldstein@clarkhill.com, 202-772-0917), Courtney Gayle Taylor (cgtaylor@clarkhill.com; 202-552-2350); Dennis Devaney (ddevaney@clarkhill.com, 313-309-9454); or another member of Clark Hill's International Trade Business Unit.