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Newsprint trade duties set for January 8

Thirty-four members of the House of Representatives have sent a letter to the Secretary of Commerce expressing deep concern with the pending antidumping and countervailing duty
investigations into the import of newsprint and asking for consideration of the negative impact on the industry should a trade remedy be applied.  Maryland Representatives Cummings, Raskin and Ruppersberger signed on to this letter.  The industry will continue to work this issue and focus on the Senate after the first of the year.

PLEASE BE AWARE that the Department of Commerce will announce “preliminary” countervailing (anti-subsidy) duties on Canadian imports on January 8.  Commerce is constrained by the law so it has to come up with a trade remedy to respond its analysis on Canadian subsidies.  The effort over the last two weeks has been geared toward minimizing the duties – which will vary depending upon the manufacturer of the newsprint.  Commerce has now delayed action on anti-dumping duties that was scheduled for July 16 and is now pushed off until March 7, so that is a minor victory.

The countervailing duties issued on January 8 will immediately impact publishers who are importers of record.  Publishers will pay fees that go into accounts that are established by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.  If we are successful in getting Commerce and the International Trade Commission to issue a “negative” final determination in spring, and fall 2018, respectively, these cash deposits plus interest will be returned to publishers.

MDDC will continue to work with our partners to monitor this issue.

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