FOND DU LAC, Wis. – The U.S. Department of Commerce has determined that Mercury Marine provided enough evidence of “dumping” practices by Japanese outboard-engine builders that it will begin an initial investigation, according to a document it released on Thursday.
Yamaha, however, said in a statement today that this doesn’t imply a victory for Mercury Marine.
“The International Trade Commission has not yet decided anything,” said Yamaha Marine Group President Phil Dyskow. “The DOC investigation goes forward automatically in such situations, unless there is a question of the petitioners standing to represent the industry. In fact, nothing has been decided.”
Dumping occurs when a country’s industry sells products in the United States at prices significantly lower than in its own country, Mercury Marine explained in a statement today.
Mercury’s petition, filed January 8, alleges that Japanese outboard-engine companies have engaged in illegal pricing activities in the U.S. for several years, and that they continue to do so.
ITC also investigating
The International Trade Commission (ITC) is also investigating the claims Mercury made in the petition it filed with the Commerce Department on January 8. It is trying to determine whether Mercury Marine was injured by the alleged dumping.
The ITC gave Mercury Marine and Japanese engine builders a chance to present their respective sides during a hearing on Thursday. (See Boating Industry e-News Daily article, “Dumping allegations polarizing the industry.”)
The ITC said it will decide whether there is enough evidence to go forward with the investigation by February 23. If it does not determine there is enough evidence, the Department of Commerce investigation also will be called off, according to an article today in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Otherwise, the Department of Commerce is scheduled to report initial findings by June 16, with a final report filed by the end of August, the newspaper reported.
“We are certainly gratified the Commerce Department’s initial review determined there was sufficient evidence to warrant a full investigation,” said Patrick C. Mackey, president of Mercury Marine, in a statement today.