232 Auto Investigation Timeline Published

By Susan Kohn Ross

The Federal Register notice advising the timeline which applies to the Administration’s 232 investigation regarding automobiles and parts was published on May 30, 2018.  The relevant time frame requires that written comments are due by June 22, 2018 and rebuttal comments by July 6, 2018.  A public hearing will be held on July 19 and 20, 2018.  All comments should be filed through www.regulations.gov referring to Docket Number DOC-2018-0002.

In particular, Commerce wants information about:

  • The quantity and nature of imports of automobiles, including cars, SUVs, vans and light trucks, and automotive parts and other circumstances related to the importation of automobiles and automotive parts;
  • Domestic production needed for projected national defense requirements;
  • Domestic production and productive capacity needed for automobiles and automotive parts to meet projected national defense requirements;
  • The existing and anticipated availability of human resources, products, raw materials, production equipment, and facilities to produce automobiles and automotive parts;
  • The growth requirements of the automobiles and automotive parts industry to meet national defense requirements and/or requirements to assure such growth, particularly with respect to investment and research and development;
  • The impact of foreign competition on the economic welfare of the U.S. automobiles and automotive parts industry;
  • The displacement of any domestic automobiles and automotive parts causing substantial unemployment, decrease in the revenues of government, loss of investment or specialized skills and productive capacity, or other serious effects;
  • Relevant factors that are causing or will cause a weakening of our national economy;
  • The extent to which innovation in new automotive technologies is necessary to meet projected national defense requirements;
  • Whether and, if so, how the analysis of the above factors changes when U.S. production by majority U.S.-owned firms is considered separately from U.S. production by majority foreign-owned firms; and
  • Any other relevant factors.

As usual, the process describes how the comments are to be filed, permits the submission of business confidential information, outlines the process to request to speak and submit testimony at the hearing and emphasizes all testimony, oral or written, must address the factors listed in 15 C.F.R. § 705.4 (a list which nearly mirrors the factors Commerce cites in its notice):

(a) To determine the effect on the national security of the imports of the article under investigation, the Department shall consider the quantity of the article in question or other circumstances related to its import. With regard for the requirements of national security, the Department shall also consider the following:

(1) Domestic production needed for projected national defense requirements;

(2) The capacity of domestic industries to meet projected national defense requirements;

(3) The existing and anticipated availabilities of human resources, products, raw materials, production equipment and facilities, and other supplies and services essential to the national defense;

(4) The growth requirements of domestic industries to meet national defense requirements and the supplies and services including the investment, exploration and development necessary to assure such growth; and

(5) Any other relevant factors.

(b) In recognition of the close relation between the strength of our national economy and the capacity of the United States to meet national security requirements, the Department shall also, with regard for the quantity, availability, character and uses of the imported article under investigation, consider the following:

(1) The impact of foreign competition on the economic welfare of any domestic industry essential to our national security;

(2) The displacement of any domestic products causing substantial unemployment, decrease in the revenues of government, loss of investment or specialized skills and productive capacity, or other serious effects; and

(3) Any other relevant factors that are causing or will cause a weakening of our national economy.

The complete Federal Register notice can be found here: https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2018-05-30/pdf/2018-11708.pdf.

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