Court rules against "unsupported" trade duties

17 May 2003

In this latest development of a long-standing legal battle, the court agreed with the claim made by Eurodif and Urenco that US antidumping and countervailing duty laws did not cover the sale of enrichment services, but only the sale of the product.

The dispute was initiated on 7 December 2000, when USEC alleged that uranium imports were being unfairly sold on the US market below production costs. The claim was upheld by the DoC about a year later. Soon after, the US International Trade Commission established that USEC had suffered, or was threatened with, material injury as a result of LEU imports from France, Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

A statement by USEC in response to the Court of International Trade ruling claimed that "the court has not reversed the DoC's final determination nor any of the DoC's dumping or countervailing duty order, which remain in effect. The US government will continue to collect duties on LEU imports from France, Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, pending the court's final ruling." USEC pointed out that the court has remanded certain matters to the DoC for reconsideration. "The remand in the trade cases provides the DoC with an opportunity to better explain its determination given certain prior DoC decisions that the court felt were inconsistent with the DoC's holding that enrichment contracts were sales of goods," USEC said, adding: "These decisions were addressed in the DoC's final determination along with a number of other issues." The DoC has until mid-June to respond to the remand, after which all parties will have 20 days to respond. All parties may reply to any responses within a week of their filing. A request by a group of 22 US utilities to intervene in the case was also granted by the court.

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