WASHINGTON - The Coalition for Fair Trade of Hardwood Plywood (CFTHP) said it wants to make sure that importers of Chinese hardwood and decorative plywood are making cash deposits as required for these products to enter the United States.

U.S. Hardwood Plywood Makers Push for Deposits on Chinese ImportsThe CFTHP issued its declaration in a press release a week after the International Trade Administration announced it would push back the deadline from July 17 to Sept. 5 for determining antidumping rates on Chinese hardwood and decorative plywood imports. The CFTHP, which includes Columbia Forest Products, Roseburg Forest Products, States Ind. and Timber Products, filed an unfair trade petition against China for products "sold in the United States at dumped prices" last September.

In February, the U.S. Department of Commerce set preliminary countervailing duties of 22.63% or 27.16% on most imported Chinese hardwood plywood. The CFTHP said it is working closely with the DOC and U.S. Customs and Border Protection to ensure that the cash deposit requirement is being enforced.

Jeff Levin, counsel for CFTHP, said U.S. law requires that the U.S. importer makes the cash deposit “as a ticket for admission for entry of the merchandise in the United States.”

According to CHTHP, the cash deposit requirement resulting from the preliminary determination in the countervailing duty (CVD) portion of the unfair trade investigation went into effect as of March 14. The group said the vast majority of imports from China are required to pay a cash deposit currently set at 27.16% or 22.63%. The cash deposit requirement could change based on the final determination of the antidumping review.

"If the calculation of actual duties owed exceeds the level of estimated duties, Customs will issue a bill to the U.S. importer for the difference, including the accrual of interest," Levin said.

The American Alliance of Hardwood Plywood (AAHP), a group whose members import hardwood plywood from China, has formed to battle against the antidumping petitioners.

The U.S. International Trade Commission estimated that $707.3 million worth of Chinese hardwood plywood was imported annually, representing about one-third of the total consumed in the U.S.

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