U.S. Manufacturers File Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Petitions

On March 31, U.S. mattress producers Brooklyn Bedding, Corsicana Mattress Co., Elite Comfort Solutions, FXI Inc., Innocor Inc., Kolcraft Enterprises Inc. and Leggett & Platt Inc., as well as the Teamsters and United Steelworkers (two labor unions representing mattress industry workers) filed seven antidumping and one countervailing duty petitions. The petitions charge that unfairly traded imports of finished mattresses from eight countries are causing material injury to the U.S. mattress industry.

The petitions were filed jointly with the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) and the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC). The antidumping petitions name seven countries — Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Serbia, Thailand, Turkey and Vietnam, and allege dumping margins of between 48% and 1,008%.

The countervailing duty petition targets China, which already is subject to antidumping duties following an investigation that was completed in 2019.

Shortly after the petitions were filed, a group of mattress importers (wholesalers and retailers) formed the American Mattress Alliance, which opposes the antidumping and countervailing duty petitions.   

The DOC is expected to decide whether it will accept the petitions by April 20, said Ryan Trainer, president of the International Sleep Products Association, in Alexandria, Virginia. If the DOC does, the ITC is expected to issue its preliminary injury determinations by mid-May.

If the agencies find both that the targeted imports named in the antidumping petitions are being sold at unfair prices and that those imports are injuring the U.S. mattress industry, U.S. importers of these goods would be required to post antidumping duties on those imports that enter the United States beginning in late October 2020, Trainer said. If the DOC also finds that “critical circumstances” exist, those duties could be retroactively applied to goods entered as early as late July 2020.

If DOC also finds that mattresses from China have benefited from unfair subsidies, and the ITC finds injury, additional countervailing duties will be added to the antidumping duties already being collected on those imports, Trainer said.

The COVID-19 pandemic could cause some of these deadlines to be postponed, he added.

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