Rulings, remedies and court proceedings for customs and trade professionals

Door Thresholds in Scope of Aluminum Extrusion Order, Petitioner Says

Door thresholds imported by Worldwide Door Components and Columbia Aluminum Products are both expressly and generally within the scope of antidumping and countervailing orders on aluminum extrusions from China, petitioner Aluminum Extrusions Fair Trade Committee said in an Aug. 29 reply at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (Worldwide Door Components v. U.S., Fed. Cir. # 23-1532) (Columbia Aluminum Products v. U.S., Fed. Cir. # 23-1534).

Start A Trial

The reply comes in response to an Aug. 8 brief by Worldwide and Columbia (see 2308090043). That brief, rests on "rewritten history," the AEFTC said. Despite Worldwide's and Columbia's assertions to the contrary, the original scope ruling considered the general scope language in its entirety and determined that the door thresholds fell within three separate provisions, all of which precluded the thresholds from the finished merchandise exclusion, the AEFTC said.

"The crux of Appellees' argument ... is that their door thresholds are not subject extrusions, but rather finished merchandise, because they are ready for use at the time of importation." However, the scope included door thresholds regardless of whether they are ready for use at the time of import. "The provision identifying door thresholds as in-scope merchandise expressly disclaims the exclusion that Appellees rely on," the AEFTC said.

Additionally, as parts of doors assembled after importation, the thresholds were "definitionally" not finished products for which the exclusion could have applied, said the AEFTC. Commerce correctly found that the door thresholds were "parts for final finished products that are assembled after importation" and as such were "subassemblies." Worldwide and Columbia both confirmed that the thresholds were parts of assembles into larger products and "fit squarely within Commerce's subassembly framework."

The argument by Worldwide and Columbia that the thresholds contain significant non-aluminum and non-extruded components is irrelevant because the amount of extruded aluminum in an assembly does not determine whether it is finished merchandise, the AEFTC said, pointing to Shenyang Yuanda v. U.S., where the CAFC specifically upheld a subassembly determination where the product at issue was composed of significant non-aluminum parts.

Similarly, an argument by the Worldwide and Columbia that the thresholds are finished merchandise because door thresholds from another manufacturer can be purchased at Lowe's is of limited relevance, the AEFTC said. "Selling a part through different channels of distribution does not transform the part into a complete final finished product."

The products at issue are both specifically included as door thresholds under the express scope language and generally included as subassemblies, the AEFTC said.

Although WorldWide and Columbia claimed that Commerce came around on remand, the agency "never wavered" from its original determination that the door thresholds were in-scope, it simply followed the Court of International Trade's order "under protest" in its remand determination, the AEFTC said.