US finds harm from Argentine, Indonesian biodiesel imports

06 December 2017 15:45 Source:ICIS News

HOUSTON (ICIS)--The US International Trade Commission (ITC) determined late on Tuesday in a 4-0 vote that the US biodiesel industry is materially injured by biodiesel imports from Argentina and Indonesia.

As a result of the USITC’s affirmative determinations, the commerce department will issue countervailing duty orders on imports of biodiesel from Argentina and Indonesia.

“This unanimous vote is important progress to addressing the harm by this unfair trade on biodiesel,” said National Biodiesel Board (NBB) CEO Donnell Rehagen. “US energy policy sought to create a level playing field for domestic and imported biodiesel, but foreign government subsidies have made it nearly impossible for US producers to compete.”

The NBB Fair Trade Coalition petitioned the US government earlier this year, initiating simultaneous anti-dumping and anti-subsidy cases against Argentina and Indonesia.

In November, the commerce department ruled in favour of the US biodiesel industry in a preliminary antidumping determination, finding that biodiesel imports from Argentina and Indonesia are sold into the US below fair value.

As a result of these decisions, importers of Argentinian and Indonesian biodiesel will be required to pay two sets of cash deposits on biodiesel imported from those countries.

Argentina accounted for two-thirds of US biodiesel imports, which totaled 916m gal (3.5bn litres) in 2016, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) data showed.

Total US biodiesel consumption is about 2bn gal/year.

Biodiesel is made mainly from soybean oil in Brazil, whereas European producers use rapeseed oil and Asian producers favour palm oil.

By Leela Landress de Perez