Habas Sinai Ve Tibbi Gazlar Istihsal Endustrisi A.S. v. United States, No. 20-1506 (Fed. Cir. 2021)Annotate this Case
The Department of Commerce initiated a countervailing duty (CVD) investigation on imports of rebar from Turkey and issued questionnaires to the Turkish government and to Habas, the sole respondent, concerning benefits the Turkish government extended to Habas. In response, Habas did not disclose that it received benefits via a duty drawback program. Habas later revealed that it held a permit under the program and occasionally benefitted from drawbacks for raw materials. Habas claimed that it had no obligation to disclose the program in its questionnaire response because Commerce had previously, in another investigation, determined that program benefits were not countervailable; the questionnaire did not specifically inquire about the program.. Commerce imposed a CVD rate of 14.01 percent, finding that Habas failed to cooperate, 19 U.S.C. 1677e(b), when it failed to timely report those benefits. Commerce selected the highest non-de minimis rate for a similar program, based on treatment of the benefit in another countervailing duty proceeding involving Turkey. Commerce had applied the 14.01 percent rate with respect to an export tax rebate program in a 1986 CVD investigation, “Welded Pipe and Tube from Turkey.”
The Trade Court rejected Habas’s argument that, even if Commerce was justified in using “facts otherwise available” to select a CVD rate, Commerce’s selection of the 14.01 percent rate was unreasonable because it was not adequately corroborated by the 1986 investigation. The Federal Circuit affirmed. Habas has not shown that Commerce exceeded its statutory authority.