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January 09, 2014

Union favors duties on OTR tires from China

The United Steelworkers (USW) supports the unanimous affirmative vote by the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) to keep existing "orders" on OTR tires imported from China.

According to the union, the decision provides job security "for the hundreds of tire workers who make these same tire products at Titan, Bridgestone-Firestone and Goodyear factories in Iowa, Illinois, Ohio, Kansas and New York."

The International Trade Commission recommended continuing the duties on OTR tires from China on Dec. 20, 2013 (see "Duties on Chinese OTR tires will continue"). The ITC's final vote came on Jan. 6, 2014.

“We welcome recognition that Chinese tire producers continue to benefit from unfair subsidies and the continued relief from these subsidized imports is needed to level the playing field for the domestic tire industry and its workers,” says USW President Leo Gerard.

The ITC acted under the five-year sunset review process required by international law. The original case was jointly filed by the USW and Titan Tire Corp., in June 2007. In the review, the U.S. Commerce Department found that subsidization is likely to continue or recur.

According to Stewart and Stewart, the USW’s Washington trade counsel, the Commerce Department. also revised one of the foreign producer’s rates significantly upward, from 14% to 35%, based on an administrative review that revealed this producer was benefitting from additional subsidy programs not included in the original investigation.

The USW represents 70% of the domestic OTR tire makers -- close to 5,570 workers in all. For more information, visit www.usw.org.

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