07.21.14

SCHUMER: UPCOMING DEPT. OF COMMERCE RULING ON UNFAIR RUSSIAN TRADE PRACTICES COULD SERIOUSLY UNDERMINE GLOBE SPECIALTY METALS & ITS 100 NIAGARA FALLS EMPLOYEES SENATOR CALLS ON FEDS TO REVIEW RUSSIAN METAL DUMPING THAT COULD HURT WNY PLANT

U.S. Manufacturers Believe Russian Competitor Has Been Unfairly Dumping Ferrosilicon, An Important Iron Alloy, Into U.S. & Have Taken Their Case to Fed Commerce Dept. But Commerce Issued Preliminary Ruling In Favor of Russians, Despite Irregularities Schumer Urges Commerce Dept. to Consider Case Presented By Globe That a Russian Company Misreported Key Facts Final Ruling in Case Expected This Week Schumer: Commerce Department Should Keep Globe Metals & U.S. Jobs in

Today, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer called on the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) to strongly consider the concerns of Niagarabased metal company, Globe Specialty Metals, as part of its upcoming ruling regarding unfair trade practices by Russian and Venezuelan companies.  The Commerce Department is currently investigating allegations that companies in the Russian Federation (Russia) and Venezuela are selling an iron alloy, called ferrosilicon, in U.S. markets at artificially low prices to undercut U.S. producers like Globe, which is a producer of ferrosilicon and employs 100 workers at its Western New York plant. Globe is one of several U.S. petitioners currently raising concerns with the DOC regarding its antidumping investigation of imports of ferrosilicon from Russia and Venezuela. Schumer explained that these U.S. petitioners are particularly concerned about the DOC's preliminary ruling in the case, which did not find any wrongdoing. However, according to the U.S. petitioners, that ruling was issued based on the Russian exporter misreporting critical facts. The DOC is preparing to make its final ruling this week, and Schumer said that if the Russian company is misreporting records, then the final ruling should reflect this information to ensure that Globe and other U.S. producers are competing on a level playing field with their foreign competitors. Schumer and Globe highlighted serious concerns that without swift action, countries will engage in efforts to flood the U.S. ferrosilicon market with cheap products to edge out U.S. competition. Schumer also noted that unfair trade practices have impacted Globe before, including when it was forced to shut down its plant from 20042008 due to unfair import competition.

 

"In light of these allegations of dumping by a Russian company, and the threat this could pose to jobs in Western New York, I am calling on the U.S. Department of Commerce to give full consideration to the case that Globe Specialty Metals and other U.S. companies have made against their Russian competitor. If the allegations of dumping are true, then we need to stop this Russian company dead in its tracks. This company could be hurting our businesses by selling their products at artificially cheap prices," said Schumer. "Russian metal producers may already benefit from collusion with a deceitful Russian government. They should not be able to get any further advantage over U.S. businesses. We must stick up for Western New York companies and jobs and enforce our trade laws."

 

"The ferrosilicon antidumping case is very important to our entire company, including the investments we've made in the Niagara Falls plant and the jobs of our workers at Niagara Falls," said Jeff Bradley, Chief Executive Officer of Globe Specialty Metals. "We greatly appreciate the steps Senator Schumer has taken to express his concerns about the impact of the dumped ferrosilicon imports on Globe and the need for strict enforcement of our trade laws."

 

Schumer explained that the U.S. petitioners in this case, including Globe, allege that a Russian exporter might have manipulated recorded sales revenues in their own favor. Schumer further said that because these allegations could mean serious consequences for Globe's Western New York plant, he is calling on the U.S. Department of Commerce to carefully review these records again to determine if revenue reports could have been manipulated in such a way that would undermine efforts to enforce U.S. trade laws and protect Western New York jobs.

 

This company that allegedly provided unfairly priced ferrosilicon metal from Russia would have a direct and negative impact on a major employer in Niagara Falls, Globe Specialty Metals. The resulting increased volume of foreignorigin silicon metal imports would have a negative impact on the price competitiveness and viability of U.S. suppliers and could result in a giant step backwards for a major economic engine in Western New York. Schumer is calling on the Commerce Department to review the allegedly falsified documents that Russia submitted during the investigation and thereby protect jobs in Niagara Falls.

 

Schumer further said that Globe Specialty Metals is turning the corner and helping drive economic progress in Western New York, but the federal government could open the floodgates for imported ferrosilicon alloy, at the expense of Global Specialty Metals and the Western New Yorkers they employ. Globe Specialty Metals  reopened its plant in Niagara Falls in 2008, after it had been shut down for five years due to prior unfair import competition. The U.S. silicon metal industry has twice been devastated by surges of unfairly lowpriced imports.  The dumped imports - first from China in the early 1990's and then from Russia in the early 2000's - were sold at prices that undercut domestic producers prices and caused the U.S. market to collapse.  During the second surge of dumped imports, Global Metallurgical in Niagara Falls was forced to shut down and ultimately file for bankruptcy in a process that saw more than threequarters of the company's production workers lose their jobs.  After the U.S. Commerce Department imposed antidumping duties on silicon metal imports from Russia, the Niagara Falls plant was able to restart as Globe Specialty Metals. This plant currently supports over 100 jobs in a region of the country that has suffered from surges of dumped imports in the past. Ferrosilicon production is Globe's second largest operation. Unfair trade practices in the U.S. ferrosilicon market have the potential to cripple Globe's overall operations and threaten the continued viability of the Niagara Falls plant.

 

Schumer has been an advocate for Globe and other U.S. companies against foreign dumping practices for years. In March, Schumer called on the Department of Commerce to protect Nucor Steel's Auburn New York plant and its workforce by officially addressing massive surges in imports of subsidized and predatorily priced steel rebar. Schumer launched his fight for the U.S. Department of Commerce to level the playing field for Nucor and its over 300 workers ahead of this year's construction season, when the demand for rebar jumps significantly. In 2012, Schumer went to bat for Globe, calling on the ForeignTrade Zone Board to reject three foreigntrade subzone requests that would have undone economic progress and undermined jobs in Western New York. The three new subzones would have provided preferential customs treatment to unfairlypriced silicon metal from China and Russia, which would have had a direct and negative impact on Globe Specialty Metals. The resulting increased volume of foreignorigin silicon metal imports would have a negative impact on the price competitiveness and viability of U.S. suppliers, including Globe's Niagara Falls facility, and could result in a giant step backwards for a positive economic engine in Western New York.

  

The text of Senator Schumer's letter to Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker appears below:

 

Dear Secretary Pritzker:

 

I write to express my concerns regarding the antidumping investigation of imports of ferrosilicon from the Russian Federation.  The U.S. petitioners in this case include Globe Specialty Metals, which has a major manufacturing facility in Niagara Falls, New York.

 

Globe Specialty Metals reopened a plant in Niagara Falls in 2008 that had been shut down for five years due to unfair import competition.  This plant currently supports over 100 jobs in a region of the country that has suffered from surges of dumped imports in the past.  Ferrosilicon production is Globe's second largest operation.  Unfair trade practices in the U.S. ferrosilicon market have the potential to cripple Globe's overall operations and threaten the continued viability of the Niagara Falls plant.

 

U.S. petitioners have informed me that a negative preliminary determination was issued in the ferrosilicon investigation because the Russian exporter misreported critical facts needed to calculate the margin of dumping properly.  They allege that the Russian exporter portrayed payments received in connection with its sales as revenue received for separate "postsale" services (such as sizing and warehousing), when these payments should have been treated as part of the revenue received for the merchandise.  Additionally, the U.S. petitioners indicate that the Russian exporter misreported the shipment dates for many of its home market sales.  If accurate, this misreporting would substantially distort the calculations to determine the potential margin of dumping.

 

In light of these allegations and the threat they may pose to effective enforcement of our trade remedy laws, we ask that you give full consideration to the U.S. petitioners' concerns.  We must ensure that U.S. ferrosilicon producers are competing on a level playing field with their foreign competitors.  Strict enforcement of our trade laws is needed to protect American manufacturing companies across the country from unfair foreign practices.  Thank you for your consideration in this matter. 

 

Sincerely,

 

U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer



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