The U.S. Department of Commerce has opened an inquiry into whether companies are circumventing anti-dumping and countervailing duty orders on steel rebar from Mexico by bending the product “at one or both ends.”
The Commerce Department press release announcing the inquiry did not specify which companies are being investigated.
Mexico was the fourth-largest foreign supplier of steel rebar in 2018. Imports of rebar from Mexico in 2018 were valued at $51 million.
Port Laredo, the Port of Houston and El Paso, Texas, account for around 70% of imports of Mexican rebar coming into the U.S.
Steel rebar can be used in the construction of everything from buildings, bridges, seawalls, highway entrance and exit ramps, docks, parking garages, and tunnels.
The newest rebar inquiry is the second time in the last five years that the Commerce Department has investigated Mexican companies for possible dumping of rebar into the U.S. market.
The department also recently investigated Turkey, but determined there was no dumping of rebar.
The most recent case with the U.S. Department of Commerce was filed by the Rebar Trade Action Coalition.
The Rebar Trade Action Coalition’s individual members include: Byer Steel Group, Inc., of Cincinnati, Ohio; Commercial Metals Co., of Irving, Texas; Gerdau Armisteel US, Inc., of Tampa, Florida; Nucor Corp. of Charlotte, North Carolina; and Steel Dynamics, Inc., of Pittsboro, Indiana.
In the past five years, the Rebar Trade Action Coalition has filed cases against Mexico, Turkey, Japan and Taiwan.
The Commerce Department said it will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to begin collecting cash deposits on rebar from Mexico if it determines the anti-dumping duties are being improperly circumvented, according to the release.