WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Commerce Department said on Monday it had reached a preliminary determination that some Chinese companies are dumping hardwood plywoods in the United States, which imported an estimated $1.12 billion worth of the products from China in 2016.
A Commerce Department investigation found that exporters from China had sold hardwood plywoods used for wall panels, kitchen cabinets, tabletops and flooring in the United States for as much as 114.72 percent below fair value, the department said in a statement.
The department preliminarily set an anti-dumping margin of 114.72 percent for Shandong Dongfang Bayley Wood Co Ltd and a margin of 57.36 percent for other respondents eligible for a separate rate.
A rate of 114.72 percent was set for other Chinese producers who belong to a China-wide entity, the Commerce Department said in a statement.
Mandatory respondent Linyi Chengen Import and Export Co Ltd was determined not to be dumping and was not assessed an anti-dumping margin, the department said.
As a result of the decision, the Commerce Department will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to require cash deposits from the firms based on those preliminary rates. Linyi Chengen will not be subject to a cash deposit rate.
The Commerce Department said a final determination in the case was expected around Aug. 31.
The investigation was launched after the Coalition for Fair Trade in Hardwood Plywood initiated a complaint on behalf of itself and its members, six private firms in Oregon, New York and North Carolina.
The Commerce Department issued a preliminary finding in April that the plywood firms were being subsidized by Beijing and should be subjected to countervailing duties ranging from 9.89 percent to 111.09 percent.
It calculated preliminary subsidy rates of 111.09 percent for Shandong Dongfang Bayley Wood Co and 9.89 percent for Linyi Sanfortune Wood Co. A final decision in that case is due in early July.
Reporting by David Alexander, editing by G Crosse