The U.S. increased import duties on wind towers produced by Chengxi Shipyard Co. and CS Wind Corp. from preliminary levies imposed earlier this year to prevent the Chinese-made goods from undercutting the domestic industry.
The Commerce Department today set final tariff rates on the products after an investigation triggered by a complaint from a group of U.S. manufacturers including Broadwind Energy Inc. of Naperville, Illinois. The punitive measures are meant to counter government subsidies and to prevent the goods from being sold in the U.S. below production costs, a practice known as dumping.
The decision coincided with the start of two days of trade and economic talks between U.S. and Chinese officials in Washington. Tensions between the world’s two largest economies have risen within the past year over government support for clean-energy products, including solar cells and wind towers.
The department set anti-dumping duties of 47.59 percent on wind-towers from Chengxi Shipyard and 44.99 percent for Titan Wind Energy Suzhou Co., both based in China. The rate for Titan Wind was more than double its preliminary rate of 20.85 percent, announced in July. The utility-scale steel towers support the turbines and engines used in the production of wind energy.
The Chinese unit of South Korea-based CS Wind, along with Guodian United Power Technology Baoding Co. and Sinovel Wind Group Co., both based in China, received anti-dumping rates of 46.38 percent, also higher than their preliminary levels. All other Chinese producers and exporters of the goods received anti-dumping rates of 70.63 percent. Actual rates will be about 11 percentage points lower due to accounting adjustments.
U.S. anti-subsidy duties for the Chinese goods will be 21.86 percent for CS Wind and 34.81 percent for Titan. Other producers and exporters received an anti-subsidy rate of 28.34 percent, an increase above the preliminary tariff announced May 30.
The Commerce Department also announced anti-dumping penalties of 51.50 percent for CS Wind’s Vietnamese unit, and 58.49 percent for other producers in that country. The rates are slightly lower than the preliminary tariffs set earlier this year.
Joining Broadwind in the complaint were Fergus Falls, Minnesota-based Otter Tail Corp.’s DMI Industries, Katana Summit LLC, headquartered in Ephrata, Washington, and a unit of Dallas-based Trinity Industries Inc. Major producers of wind-energy gear include General Electric Co. of Fairfield, Connecticut, and Siemens AG of Munich.
The U.S. last year imported about $222 million worth of utility-scale wind towers from China, and $79 million from Vietnam, according to the Commerce Department.