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Patricia O'Connell
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U.S. Customs and Border Protection Investigating Imports of Stainless Steel Flanges from the Philippines for Evasion of Antidumping Duties

December 7, 2018

Washington, DC – Yesterday, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that it initiated investigations into certain imports of stainless steel flanges from the Philippines and found that there is “a reasonable suspicion” that these imports have evaded the appropriate payment of antidumping (AD) and countervailing duty (CVD) duties. According to CBP, stainless steel flanges sold by a Philippine producer, EN Corporation (also known as “Enlin Corporation”), should be treated under the law as Chinese product for purposes of the AD and CVD duties. As a result of its findings, CBP has imposed interim measures on certain importers of stainless steel flanges from the Philippines, directing that all such imports will be subject to AD/CVD duties.

Earlier this year, AD/CVD orders were issued against stainless steel flanges from India and China, with combined duties as high as 400%. The imports from the Philippine producer have been found to be stainless steel flanges that were forged in China and therefore are covered under the existing antidumping and countervailing duty orders. “We are pleased with the results of CBP’s investigations and the message it sends that AD/CVD orders will be strongly enforced,” said Daniel B. Pickard, partner in Wiley Rein LLP’s  International Trade Practice. Mr. Pickard continued: “One of the lessons from CBP’s recent action is that importers must exercise caution in order to ensure that even though merchandise is marked as ‘Made in the Philippines’ or elsewhere, that it is not actually Chinese or Indian forged product. Today’s notices represent an important step in ensuring that these orders are properly enforced and the appropriate duties are paid.”

“Last but certainly not least, we would like to recognize the important work being done by CBP. The professionals involved in Enforcement Operations are making a meaningful contribution in regard to preventing duty evasion and the circumvention of U.S. trade laws,” added Mr. Pickard. CBP will continue its investigations of these imports from the Philippines and make a final determination regarding evasion by August 2019.