US ruling on biodiesel dumping paves the way for duties on Indonesia, Argentina fuels

December 5, 2017 |

In Washington, the US International Trade Commission voted 4-0 in favor of the National Biodiesel Board Fair Trade Coalition’s position that the industry has suffered because of unfairly subsidized imports of biodiesel from Argentina and Indonesia. This affirmative vote on injury, coupled with last month’s final countervailing duties determination by the Commerce Department, paves the way for final countervailing duty orders by the end of December.

Last month, a mix of large and small producers testified on the volume and price effects of biodiesel imports from Argentina and Indonesia, and the related impacts to the industry at a hearing before the ITC commissioners. If the Commerce Department makes an affirmative final determination on dumping, then the ITC will still need to vote early next year on the question of dumping.

In November, the coalition won a preliminary antidumping determination from the Commerce Department; the department found that biodiesel imports from Argentina and Indonesia are sold into the United States below fair value. The Commerce Department also affirmed its earlier decision that these countries unfairly subsidize biodiesel last month. As a result of these decisions, importers of Argentinian and Indonesian biodiesel will be required to pay two sets of cash deposits on biodiesel imported from those countries.

Reaction from the stakeholders

National Biodiesel Board CEO Donnell Rehagen said “This unanimous vote is important progress to addressing the harm by this unfair trade on biodiesel. U.S. energy policy sought to create a level playing field for domestic and imported biodiesel, but foreign government subsidies have made it nearly impossible for U.S. producers to compete. We are gratified that countervailing duty orders will contribute to leveling the playing field such that the domestic industry has the opportunity to produce at the levels it knows it can,”

Mike McAdams of the Advanced Biofuels Association said, “Today’s disappointing decision from the U.S. ITC now obviates the need for a biodiesel producers tax credit. The biodiesel and renewable diesel industry can now align in support of extending the existing biodiesel blenders credit in an extenders package prior to the end of the year.”

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