By now, readers of my blog (or my editorial in Modern Tire Dealer, for that matter) know I tend to be against government intervention when it comes to our industry. The room for errors is too great when politicians or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or the U.S. Department of Commerce (or Transportation) try to craft legislation. Ironically, that leaves a lot of room for improvement, but how often does that happen?

Whether it’s political intrigue or political correctness or just plain politics, the bills are destined to cause problems because there often were no problems to solve. It’s particularly egregious when politicians force legislation through based on overreacting to an event or situation (can you say, TREAD Act?). That is my view, anyway.

That brings us to the recent decision by the Department of Commerce (DOC) covering OTR tires imported from India. Indian manufacturers will not be forced to pay anti-dumping tariffs on the tires. Why? Because the DOC determined off-the-road tire makers in India have not sold products in the U.S. at less-than-fair-market prices.

I am pleasantly surprised by the decision. Too often, the decision to implement tariffs on imports, particularly from China, seems to be politically motivated. The DOC finding has renewed my faith in the system.

Hats off also go to ATC Tires Private Ltd. (a part of Alliance Tire Group) and Balkrishna Industries Ltd. The DOC says it based its review on data provided by the two Indian tire manufacturers.

The preliminary decision (more on that shortly) follows the DOC’s earlier preliminary decision to implement countervailing tariffs on OTR tires imported from India. In that case, the DOC said tire manufacturers from India and Sri Lanka were benefiting from subsidies. The tariffs range from 2.9% to 7.64%.

The final determination on the anti-dumping ruling is scheduled to be announced on Jan. 4, 2017 (for the countervailing ruling it is Oct. 28, 2016), and it could change. The DOC will continue to collect evidence in the interim.

But the DOC knows Alliance and BKT are not dumping their OTR tires into the U.S. market, and that should rule the day.

For more information on the preliminary decisions, check out these links:

"DOC Finds No Evidence of Dumping in Initial Tariff Ruling."

"DOC Levies Tariffs on OTR Tires from India and Sri Lanka."

Author

Bob Ulrich
Bob Ulrich

Editor, Retired

Editor Bob Ulrich has earned a reputation as an industry expert thanks to his insightful, in-depth articles and blogs on the tire industry. Before joining Modern Tire Dealer in 1985, Bob earned a B.A. in English literature from Ohio Northern University. Also, he graduated from the University of Akron School of Law with a J.D.

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Editor Bob Ulrich has earned a reputation as an industry expert thanks to his insightful, in-depth articles and blogs on the tire industry. Before joining Modern Tire Dealer in 1985, Bob earned a B.A. in English literature from Ohio Northern University. Also, he graduated from the University of Akron School of Law with a J.D.

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