The U.S. Commerce Department slapped more duties on wooden cabinets and vanities from China in a sign of the challenges awaiting negotiations when the two countries resume trade talks next week.
The Commerce Department said Thursday it will ask U.S. Customs and Border Protection to collect cash deposits from importers of those products based on a preliminary antidumping duty rate of as much as 262%. Commerce issued the preliminary determination in response to a petition by the American Kitchen Cabinet Alliance filed earlier this year that alleged at least $2 billion in harm from Chinese shipments.
The U.S. government decided to impose an antidumping rate of 262% on Dalian Meisen Woodworking Co., 81% for Rizhao Foremost Woodwork Manufacturing Co. and 4.49% for Ancientree Cabinet Co., according to a statement emailed Thursday. All other Chinese producers and exporters that cooperated in the investigation will be charged a duty of 39%, while those that did not respond to the inquiry received a levy of 262%.
“I’d say this is a strong result for American manufacturing and American workers,” Tim Brightbill, a trade lawyer from Wiley Rein LLP in Washington, which represents the industry, said by telephone. “This goes a long way toward addressing the unfair trade practices of the Chinese industry and we’re looking forward to seeing the details of the final determinations.”
Top negotiators from the two countries are expected to meet in Washington on Oct. 10 in a bid to resume talks toward resolving a trade war.
In August, the Commerce Department slapped preliminary countervailing subsidy rates on wooden cabinets and vanities from China of as much as 229%.
“There are still more than 250,000 American jobs hanging in the balance,” Mark Trexler, chief executive of Master WoodCraft, said in the statement.
A final determination by the Commerce Department is scheduled for February, and the U.S. International Trade Commission is expected to make a final ruling March 30 as to whether it will approve the antidumping duties.