The U.S. Commerce Department on Thursday set final anti-dumping duty on silica bricks and shapes from China, signaling that it may impose punitive duties on the products.
The department made its final affirmative determination that imports of silica bricks and shapes from China had been sold below the fair value of the products in the U.S. market at dumping margins ranging from 63.81 to 73.10 percent.
Punitive duties would be imposed after both the Commerce Department and the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) make affirmative final rulings. The ITC is scheduled to make its final determination on Jan. 6, 2014. If the trade panel makes a negative determination, the investigations will be terminated.
The Commerce Department launched the investigation on Dec. 6, 2012, in response to a request of Utah Refractories Corporation, a refractory manufacturer based in the U.S. state of Utah, which alleged that Chinese exporters and producers sold these products in the U.S. market at lower prices.
Imports of silica bricks and shapes from China were estimated at 25.7 million U.S. dollars last year, according to the Commerce Department.
The move is the latest in a string of trade measures targeting imports of other countries, arousing concerns that protectionism is again on the rise in the United States.
Beijing has repeatedly urged Washington to abide by its commitment against protectionism and work with China and other countries to maintain a free, open and just trade environment.