Section 421 ductile iron waterworks fittings trade case a "defining decision".
The Section 421 of 1974 as amended had a specific purpose: to remedy or prevent market disruption caused by an increase in imports from the People's Republic of China and was a "special mechanism" intended to provide "strong protection" to U.S. industries and workers from injurious import surges from China. It was to be the "safeguard" which allowed markets to gain some relief from predatory or unfair practices being used that could not be balanced out, in a timely manner, by free, fair market forces.
We believe the waterworks 421 met all the criteria for which the rule was written by the fact that it received the unanimous backing by the ITC and was passed along to the Administration with a recommendation for relief based on the proven criteria of harm. If the facts under which this action was filed are accurate, this decision by the administration sends a clear signal to our industry and world trade partners as follows:
* We, as an industry, must find a way within ourselves to unite, create a balance and define our future, without expecting any support from new of existing rules and regulation available to govern our trade activities.
* That our trading partners may use any practice necessary to gain market penetration without fear of retribution by this administration enforcing new or present agreements, rules, or regulations put in place to ensure a level and fair trade enviroment.
If my understanding on how this decision affects the manufacturing base of our industry and this country is not accurate, the burden is now on the administration. They must send a signal or take some action that gives us some confidence that they understand and will support future actions that are properly documented and filed within the scope of the existing trade remedies available to us.
CHARLES M. KURTI
AFS VICE PRESIDENT
NEENAH FOUNDRY CO. (RETIRED)