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U.S. Trade Commission orders duties on coated paper imports

Monday, October 25, 2010

Press release from the issuing company

Washington - The United Steelworkers (USW) swiftly reacted to today's affirmative ruling that will apply duties to subsidized and dumped coated paper imports from China and Indonesia, calling the 6-0 vote by the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC)  a "strong confirmation" of the injuries suffered by American paper makers and workers.

USW President Leo W. Gerard declared: "We welcome this ruling after a year-long investigation and all of the public hearings. Painfully, the level of injury required for this decision is the closure of coated paper mills and the thousands of jobs lost preceding this petition."

He adds, "The members of Congress who testified in support of this trade case against China and Indonesia's predatory trade practices should get a strong vote for re-election next month, because they stand up for American working families."  The USW president also emphasized, "Trade laws between nations must be enforced with government fact finding and the power to defend jobs and industries with strong tariff penalties for import violations."

The USW was a joint petitioner in the original trade case filed last September with Appleton Coated LLC., NewPage Corp., and Sappi Fine Paper North America. Coated paper covered by the cases is used in many high-end commercial printing applications, including annual reports, coffee table books, magazines and brochures.

The ITC decision clears the way for the U.S. Department of Commerce to immediately impose antidumping and countervailing duties on imports of coated paper from these countries.  Last month, the Commerce Dept. found dumped imports of coated paper had reached significant margins of 7.6-135.83 percent for China, and 20.13 percent for Indonesia.  The federal agency also determined that these producers or exporters had countervailable subsidy margins ranging from 17.64 -- 178.03 percent for China, and 17.94 percent for Indonesia.

Jon Geenen, USW international vice president, said: "Today's decision shows that these predatory trade practices by the Chinese and Indonesian exporters are unfair, illegal and injurious to our employers and their workers. We will not ignore the efforts of foreign competitors who want to violate international trade standards to succeed at the expense of our union members' jobs -- that's a fight we'll never back away from."

The domestic industry has experienced capacity reductions and under-utilization resulting in the loss of jobs in communities in seven states where paper mills operate across the country.  The petitions showed that unfairly traded imports from China and Indonesia are a significant contributor to that underutilization of capacity, mill closures and resultant job losses. 

The three petitioner companies employ about 6,000 production workers represented by the USW at 20 paper mills operating in the following states:  KY, OH, ME, MD, MI, MN, and WI.





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