Tester, Cassidy, Grassley, Thune & Stabenow Stand Up for American Farmers by Combating Chinese Dumping

Senators’ bipartisan China Trade Cheating Restitution Act would pay back more than $38 million to producers impacted by China’s evasion of anti-dumping duties

As part of their continued efforts to counter China and stand up for American farmers and agricultural producers, U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), John Thune (R-S.D.), and Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) today introduced their bipartisan China Trade Cheating Restitution Act to ensure that agricultural sectors most affected by China’s evasion on anti-dumping duties receive an estimated $38.5 million in accrued delinquency interest on duties wrongfully withheld by Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) from 2000-2014.

For two decades, Chinese producers have deliberately exported honey, fresh garlic, crawfish, and mushrooms to the U.S. at a price below the cost of production to purposefully increase their market share and drive Montana, Louisiana, Iowa, South Dakota, and Michigan producers out of business – a practice called “dumping.” The United States placed anti-dumping duties on Chinese producers in 2001 to protect domestic producers and condemn China’s unfair actions.

“As a third-generation farmer, I know firsthand that Montana producers grow the highest quality products in the world and do it in a way that consumers can trust,” said Tester. “I won’t let our family farmers get cut out of the market by foreign adversaries like China who aren’t following the rules. My bipartisan bill will repay our family farmers and domestic producers the money they’re rightfully owed while helping ensure we maintain our competitive edge over China for years to come.”

“Crawfish is part of our culture in Louisiana,” said Cassidy. “China has tried to put our crawfish industry out of business by unlawfully dumping their product in the U.S. at prices below the cost of production. This legislation helps Louisiana processors stay competitive despite the harm caused by Chinese dumping.”

“The best agricultural products in the world are grown in Iowa fields by Iowa hands,” said Grassley. “Thanks to our hard-working farmers, the U.S. is the world’s top agricultural exporter. China’s unfair trade practices have hurt the dedicated individuals who produce quality products in an honest manner. Our bipartisan bill is a necessary measure to restore fairness to international trade and compensate producers who were injured by the Chinese Communist Party.”

“South Dakota is one of the top honey-producing states in the country,” said Thune. “The unfair practice of circumventing U.S. trade laws, which jeopardizes honey producers’ financial security, should be met with strict enforcement and increased protections. South Dakota honey producers deserve a level-playing field. This bipartisan legislation helps ensure fair treatment for affected domestic producers and strengthens their ability to compete globally.”

“We grow some of the best products in the world in Michigan, but our farmers can’t survive when foreign competitors like China cheat and violate our trade laws,” said Stabenow. “I want to thank Senator Tester for leading our effort to hold China accountable and provide much needed relief for our producers.”

In 2000 Congress passed the Continued Dumping and Subsidy Offset Act (CDSOA), which instructed CBP to pay all collected anti-dumping duties and accrued interest to the U.S. producers that were injured by dumped imports. CDSOA applies to imports that entered the U.S. through September 30, 2007, but due to a range of delays, CBP is still assessing and collecting anti-dumping duties and interest on many of these imports. Since 2000, it is estimated that China has evaded nearly $1.2 billion in anti-dumping duties on imported garlic, crawfish, canned mushrooms, and honey.

The Senators’ bipartisan bill will ensure that CBP distribute remaining anti-dumping duties to honey, garlic, and crawfish producers that were not paid between 2000 and 2014. In order to ensure that US producers of fresh garlic, crawfish, mushrooms, and honey are paid the duties they are owed by CBP under the CDSOA of 2000, the legislation would:

  • Require CBP to distribute under CDSOA an estimated $38.5 million in accrued delinquency interest on the anti-dumping duties that CBP collected and wrongfully withheld.
  • Amend the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 to move the date of interest collected by the CBP to be dispersed from October 1, 2014 to October 1, 2000 to account for substantial interest withheld by CBP beginning in 2000.

Related Issues