NEW YORK (Oct. 12, 2010)—The federal government will continue to collect duties on off-the-road tires from China until a final verdict is reached in a lawsuit seeking to have the duties removed, according to the same judge who reversed and remanded the duty determination to the U.S. Department of Commerce.
Judge Jane Restani of the U.S. Court of International Trade ruled in September 2009 that Commerce's calculation of both countervailing and antidumping duties on Chinese OTR tires constituted “double counting” and was unfair to the tire makers. Restani reaffirmed her ruling Aug. 4, 2010, reversing and remanding the duty decision to Commerce.
Plaintiffs Hebei Starbright Tire Co. Ltd. and Tianjin United Tire & Rubber International asked Restani to place a stay on the duties pending a final verdict, a move Commerce opposed.
In an Oct. 1 opinion, Restani noted it was clear Commerce plans to appeal her decision. There is no evidence that continuing the duties pending a final verdict will cause the plaintiffs irreparable harm, she said in her opinion. However, it could create a problem for the government if the duties are stopped, only to be finally approved by the courts.
“To avoid further briefing to no effect, the court will deny plaintiffs' request,” Restani wrote. “Obviously, if there is no appeal, the court's final opinion will become conclusive.”