The United Steelworkers are lauding a preliminary U.S. Department of Commerce ruling that China has been illegally dumping bus and truck tires on the U.S. market at below-market prices.
The agency’s determination – not a final ruling – said Chinese tire makers enjoyed subsidies of 20.87 percent to 22.57 percent. As a remedy, Commerce proposed tariffs of that size to equalize the market for U.S. truck and bus tire makers.
China sent 6.28 million bus and truck tires to the U.S., worth $887 million, in 2013, Commerce said. By 2015, China sent 8.91 million tires, worth $1.071 billion, it added.
“The anti-dumping law provides U.S. businesses and workers with a transparent, quasi-judicial, and internationally accepted mechanism to seek relief from the market-distorting effects caused by injurious dumping of imports into the United States, establishing an opportunity to compete on a level playing field,” the agency’s fact sheet adds.
“Government investigators and our trade counsel have been diligent in handling this massive case…of truck and bus tire imports from China in 2015, increasing market share each of the last three years at the expense of American producers and USW tire production workers,” said Steelworkers President Leo Gerard. The union said Chinese bus and truck tires now take 36 percent of the U.S. market. Commerce says the share might be even higher.
USW represents 6,000 workers at the U.S. plants, who produce two-thirds of all domestically made bus and truck tires.
“Unfair truck tire imports from China have denied our domestic industry the opportunity to share in job increases during a period of robust demand growth,” added Gerard.
“Again and again China has been shown to benefit from massive subsidies and to engage in widespread dumping in order to gain market share at the expense of American jobs,” said union Secretary-Treasurer Stan Johnson, who also chairs its tire and rubber workers conference.