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China ministry welcomes US court's ruling over Hebei tire case

China welcomed the decision of the United States Court of International Trade to rule the US Department of Commerce (DOC) as "unreasonable" for its imposition of anti-dumping duties (AD) and countervailing duties (CVD) on tires from a Chinese maker, the Ministry of Commerce said Sep.23 in an online statement.

The US court ruled on Sept 18 that the imposition of the DOC on Hebei Starbright Tyre Co Ltd might cause double counting as "while Commerce may have the authority to apply the CVD law to products from a non-market economy (NME)-designated country, the CVD and NME AD statutes are unclear as to how Commerce is to account for the overlap between the statutes when imposing both CVD and AD duties on goods from a NME country."

The US Department of Commerce decided on July 31, 2007, that it would launch AD and CVD probes simultaneously into China-made off-road tires.

It said on Sept 4, 2008, that it would levy a 19.15 percent AD and a CVD ranging from 2.45 percent to 14 percent on the Chinese tires.

The US court ruled that the US Department of Commerce either scrap the CVD or amend its methodologies and procedures of levying AD and CVD on merchandise from China within 90 days.

China believes that a dual imposition of AD and CVD on Chinese products has infringed US rules and its tradition of not adopting anti-subsidy measures against non-market economies, and it was not in conformity with rules under the World Trade Organization. The move exerted unfair treatment to Chinese enterprises, and hurt their legitimate export interests, said the statement.

Although the ruling still needs to be implemented by the DOC, it signals a breakthrough by China's companies in opposing protectionism and striving for fair treatment from the United States, according to the statement.

China also urged the US Commerce to act up to the ruling by the court, correcting its erroneous practice of conducting countervailing investigation in Chinese products, said the statement.

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