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New Trade Case on Staples from Korea, China, and Taiwan

A new U.S. antidumping (“AD”) and countervailing (“CVD”) duty petition was filed on June 6, 2019 by Kyocera Senco Industrial Tools, Inc. (“Petitioner”) targeting imports of collated steel staples (“CCSS”) from South Korea, China, and Taiwan.  

The products subject to the investigation are CCSS made from steel wire having a nominal diameter from 0.0345 inch to 0.0830 inch, inclusive, with a nominal leg length from 0.25 inch to 3.0 inches, inclusive, and a nominal crown width from 0.187 inch to 1.125 inch, inclusive. The CCSS may be manufactured from any type of steel, and are included in the scope of the investigation regardless of whether they are uncoated or coated, regardless of the type or number of coatings, including but not limited to coatings to inhibit corrosion. The collated steel staples may be collated using any material or combination of materials, including but not limited to adhesive, glue, and adhesive film or paper or adhesive tape. The full scope of the merchandise covered is set forth below.

The petition includes AD (less than fair value) and CVD (unfair subsidy) allegations against South Korea, China, and Taiwan. The Department of Commerce (“DOC”) and the International Trade Commission (“ITC”) will conduct the investigation.

Within the next 45 days, the ITC will determine if the imports are injuring the U.S. industry. If the ITC finds injury, then the case will move to the DOC which will calculate the preliminary AD and CVD duty margins.

The DOC’s preliminary determinations are currently scheduled for August 30, 2019 (CVD) and November 13, 2019 (AD), which are the dates when 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: Kyocera Senco Industrial Tools, 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:

  • South Korea – AD margins in the range of 10.23%-14.25%
  • China – AD margins in the range of 119.68%-122.92%
  • Taiwan – AD margins of 47.35%.

The petition has also alleged CVD margins for South Korea, China, and Taiwan above de minimis.

Merchandise covered by the scope of the case:

The merchandise subject to this Petition is CCSS. A staple is a u-shaped wire fastener usually with two same-size pointed or pointless legs connected by a crown located opposite staple-point ends. CCSS may be manufactured from any type of steel, and it is Petitioner's intent to include in the scope of these proceedings CCSS produced from any type of steel. CCSS are included in the scope of the investigation regardless of whether they are uncoated or coated, regardless of the type or number of coatings, including but not limited to coatings to inhibit corrosion.

CCSS may be collated using any material or combination of materials, including but not limited to adhesive, glue, and adhesive film or adhesive or paper tape.

CCSS are principally used to fasten two or more pieces of material, including but not limited to wood or other solid building materials.

It is Petitioner's express intention that CCSS covered by this Petition remain subject merchandise whether imported in packages consisting solely of CCSS, or packaged in combination with non-subject articles, including but not limited to pneumatic, electric, or gas powered staple guns, hand tools, and household tool kits.

Certain collated steel staples subject to this investigation are currently classifiable under subheading 8305.20.00.00 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS).

While the HTSUS subheading is provided for convenience and for 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 Business Unit.