The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) began investigating imports originating from China and Vietnam for illegal dumping of upholstered domestic seating. It is believed that these products are originating from China and Vietnam. The CBSA received the complaint on October 16, 2020, from Palliser Furniture, Ltd., a company based out of Winnipeg. Palliser and several other companies joined in the complaint alleging the import of these goods are them material harms in the form of lost profits and market share, reduced capacity, price depression, and low prices.
The CBSA started its investigation on December 21, 2020. The CBSA will determine whether the goods are being sold at subsidized or unfair prices and will issue a preliminary decision on March 22, 2021. Concurrently, the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) will conduct a parallel investigation to determine if the imports are harming domestic producers. The CITT will issue its decision on February 19, 2021.
The goods subject to the investigation are upholstered seating under the following tariff classifications:
Upholstered means leather, pleather, and other fabric covers that are used with pads and springs to provide a soft covering for a seat frame. The covering can be permanent or semi-permanent (i.e., sewed or attached with Velcro). The definition also includes removable cushions. The types of seating include various types of chairs.
Illegal dumping refers to goods being imported at artificially low prices to either (1) undermine a domestic competitor or (2) to dump a large stock of a particular good. Illegal dumping can significantly harm domestic industries. Illegal dumping is a problem because certain countries, like Vietnam and China, specialize their industries in providing consumer and industrial goods at a larger scale than their Canadian counterparts and can use their lower labor and operating costs to outcompete domestic companies. The World Trade Organization, regional trade groups, and bilateral trade agreements restrict illegal dumping.
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