WASHINGTON (Jan. 4) — Interested parties have until the second week of February to comment to the International Trade Commission on whether to review a long-standing order mandating antidumping duties against polychloroprene rubber imported from Japan.
The 55-percent duties, intended to prevent material injury to U.S. polychloroprene manufacturers, have been in effect since 1973; in its latest review of the order, just last June, the commission voted 3-2 to reaffirm it. But Gates Corp. petitioned the ITC, claiming that changed circumstances in the industry — the closure of Polimeri Europa S.p.A.´s polychloroprene plant in France and DuPont Performance Elastomers L.L.C.´s plans to shutter its Louisville, Ky. facility — mandated a new review.
Unless Japanese polychloroprene rubber is allowed in to the U.S. without duties, Gates argued, U.S. users of polychloroprene will have a hard time obtaining sufficient supplies. DuPont Performance Elastomers, which supports continuing the duties, claimed Gates has no standing to request a review of the order, because it is not a polychloroprene manufacturer.