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CIT Remands Parts, Sustains Parts of CVD Investigation Into Moroccan Phosphate Fertilizers

The Court of International Trade in a Sept. 14 opinion remanded elements and sustained elements of the Commerce Department's countervailing duty investigation into phosphate fertilizers from Morocco.

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Judge Timothy Stanceu sent back Commerce's decision to exclude exporter OCP's selling, general and administrative costs from its cost of production buildup as part of the subsidy finding for the provision of mining rights for less than adequate remuneration. Also as part of this subsidy decision, Stanceu sent back the agency's calculation of OCP's profit rate for calculating the cost of production buildup. The judge also remanded the specificity finding related to the Moroccan program for reductions in tax fines and penalties.

However, Stanceu ruled that Commerce properly started the investigation with adequate industry support; that the agency properly picked an overall profit rate over a surrogate profit rate when calculating the cost of production buildup; and that it legally calculated the world price benchmark for phosphate rock. The judge also affirmed the agency's decision to look into new subsidy allegations discovered during the proceeding.