WASHINGTON, Feb. 20 (Xinhua) -- The U.S. Department of Commerce on Wednesday announced its affirmative final determination in duty investigations against drawn stainless steel sinks from China.
The move increases the possibility of imposing punitive duties on the products.
The U.S. Commerce claimed that Chinese producers and exporters sold drawn stainless steel sinks in the U.S. market at dumping margins ranging from 27.14 percent to 76.53 percent.
It also alleged that Chinese producers and exporters received countervailable subsidies of 4.8 percent to 12.26 percent.
Imports of drawn stainless sinks from China were valued at an estimated 118 million U.S. dollars in 2011, according to the U.S. government.
The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) is scheduled to make its final determination on or before April 5, 2013.
If the result affirms that the products cause material injury or threat to the U.S. industry, the U.S. Commerce will issue antidumping duty (AD) and countervailing duty (CVD) orders. If the ITC makes a negative determination, the investigations will be terminated.
The U.S. Commerce initiated the AD and CVD investigations in March 2012 in response to a petition filed by Illinois-based Elkay Manufacturing Company.
The U.S. move came at a time when protectionism is making a comeback in America amid a sluggish economic recovery. It is widely believed that such actions would hurt U.S.-China trade relations that are increasingly critical to the global recovery.
The Chinese Ministry of Commerce has repeatedly urged the United States to abide by its commitment against protectionism and work together with China and other members of the international community to maintain a free, open and just international trade environment.