The investigation of whether off-the-road tires from India and Sri Lanka should be subject to tariffs is front and center at the start of 2017. On Jan. 4 those supporting and opposing tariffs are going head-to-head in a hearing before the International Trade Commission (ITC). Here’s the lineup.
In one corner are those asking for tariffs to be implemented. As you may recall, Titan Tire Corp. and the United Steelworkers were the ones who asked for the investigation last January. Titan is represented by Chairman Maurice Taylor Jr., CEO and President Paul Reitz, Vice President of Sales Paul Hawkins, Field Sales Manager Dennis Nutter, and Des Moines, Iowa, Plant General Manager Lester Brewer.
Mark Carpenter, owner and president of the six-store Jerry’s Tire and Auto Service Inc. in Michigan, and Stan Johnson, international secretary-treasurer of the United Steelworkers also are scheduled to speak in favor of the imposition of tariffs on OTR tires.
As for the opposition, the lineup of speakers includes representatives of Alliance Tire Americas Inc., Balkrishna Industries Ltd. (BKT), Camso USA Inc. and East Bay Tire Co.
Alliance is being represented by its President James Clark, Vice President of Engineering and OE Sales Domenic Mazzola, and Vice President of Aftermarket Sales Bob Arnold.
BKT’s speakers include Director of Finance B.K. Bansal and Senior Deputy General Manager of Logistics Rajesh Kakani, plus from BKT USA Inc. President Minoo Mehta and Vice President Brian Robinson.
Camso’s team includes Robert Bulger, vice president and general manager, Catherin Conides, vice president of legal affairs and general cousel for Camso Inc., plus Thomas Van Ormer, director of purchasing for East Bay Tire Co., the 11-location business with locations in California and Hawaii.
Attorneys for both sides will offer opening and closing remarks.
This ITC hearing is another step in the process as the government studies whether the U.S. OTR tire market is being harmed by unfair pricing or subsidy practies abroad. The U.S. Department of Commerce also is conducting an investigation of the same matter. Final determinations in both agencies' investigations are expected in the coming months.