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U.S. ITC: Paper Imports from China and Indonesia Hurt U.S. Workers

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The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has found that coated paper imports from China and Indonesia are causing material injury to American workers. The 6-0 vote by the bipartisan commission will allow the U.S. Department of Commerce to impose antidumping and countervailing duties on imports of coated free sheet paper from China and Indonesia.

The ruling was welcome news to Appleton Coated LLC, NewPage Corp., and Sappi Fine Paper North America, as well as the United Steelworkers (USW), who filed unfair trade cases in 2009 with the Commerce Department and the ITC last year. The companies alleged that certain coated paper from China and Indonesia had been dumped and subsidized, resulting in injury to the domestic industry and its employees. The Commerce Department found that imports from China and Indonesia were indeed dumped and subsidized by significant margins.

The three American companies, which employ about 6,000 production workers represented by the USW, blamed the government subsidies for suppressing prices and forcing mill closures in the U.S. They look to the ITC ruling to restore fair competition.

Coated paper covered by the cases is used in many high-end commercial printing applications, including annual reports, coffee table books, magazines and brochures.