Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium: Preliminary Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 26844-26846 [E9-13066]

Download as PDF 26844 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 106 / Thursday, June 4, 2009 / Notices Notification to Interested Parties This notice also serves as a reminder to parties subject to administrative protective order (APO) of their responsibility concerning the disposition of proprietary information disclosed under APO, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305 and as explained in the APO. Timely written notification of the return/destruction of APO materials or conversion to judicial protective order is hereby requested. Failure to comply with the regulations and the terms of an APO is a sanctionable violation. This notice is in accordance with section 777(i)(1) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended and 19 CFR 251.213(d)(4). Dated: May 29, 2009. John M. Andersen, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations. [FR Doc. E9–13070 Filed 6–3–09; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–DS–S DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [C–423–809] Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium: Preliminary Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review AGENCY: Import Administration, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce. SUMMARY: The Department of Commerce is conducting an administrative review of the countervailing duty order on stainless steel plate in coils from Belgium for the period January 1, 2007, through December 31, 2007. We preliminarily find that ArcelorMittal Stainless Belgium N.V. (‘‘AMS Belgium’’) did not receive any countervailable subsidies in this review and its rate is, consequently, zero. Interested parties are invited to comment on these preliminary results. EFFECTIVE DATE: June 4, 2009. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: David Layton or Alexander Montoro, AD/CVD Operations, Office 1, Import Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482–0371 and (202) 482–0238, respectively. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background On May 11, 1999, the Department of Commerce (‘‘the Department’’) VerDate Nov<24>2008 17:30 Jun 03, 2009 Jkt 217001 published a countervailing duty order (‘‘CVD’’) on stainless steel plate in coils (‘‘SSPC’’) from Belgium. See Notice of Amended Final Determinations: Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium and South Africa; and Notice of Countervailing Duty Orders: Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium, Italy and South Africa, 64 FR 25288 (May 11, 1999) (‘‘CVD Order’’). On March 11, 2003, as a result of litigation, the Department published an amended CVD order on stainless steel plate in coils from Belgium. See Notice of Amended Countervailing Duty Orders; Certain Stainless Steel Plate in Coils From Belgium, Italy, and South Africa, 68 FR 11524 (March 11, 2003). On May 5, 2008, the Department published a notice of ‘‘Opportunity to Request Administrative Review’’ for this CVD order. See Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; Opportunity To Request Administrative Review, 73 FR 24532 (May 5, 2008). On June 2, 2008, we received a request for review from Ugine & ALZ Belgium (‘‘U&A Belgium’’), a Belgian producer of SSPC.1 In accordance with 19 CFR 351.221(c)(1)(i), we published a notice of initiation of the review on July 1, 2008, covering the period January 1, 2007 through December 31, 2007. See Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews and Requests for Revocation in Part, 73 FR 37409 (July 1, 2008). On August 18, 2008, we issued CVD questionnaires to the Government of Belgium (‘‘GOB’’), the Commission of the European Union (‘‘EC’’), and U&A Belgium. We received responses to these questionnaires on October 15, 2008, from the EC and on October 22, 2008, from the GOB and AMS Belgium (formerly U&A Belgium). On January 28, 2009, we issued supplemental questionnaires to the GOB and AMS Belgium. We received responses for the supplemental questionnaires from both the GOB and AMS Belgium on March 4, 2009. On April 16, 2009, we issued a second supplemental questionnaire to AMS Belgium, and we received its response on April 22, 2009. On May 4, 2009, we issued a second supplemental questionnaire to the GOB. On May 8, 2009, the GOB requested an extension to 1 The review was originally requested by U&A Belgium. The company previously known as U&A Belgium stated in questionnaire responses that its name changed to ArcelorMittal Stainless Belgium (‘‘AMS Belgium’’) during the period of review (‘‘POR’’) pursuant to the merger of Mittal Steel NV with Arcelor S.A. completed on November 11, 2007. See AMS Belgium Questionnaire Response dated October 22, 2008 (‘‘AMS QR’’) at page 1, footnote 1, and page 4, footnote 2. PO 00000 Frm 00014 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 file its supplemental response, which we granted. See Memorandum from Susan Kuhbach to file, entitled ‘‘SSPC from Belgium – Meeting with GOB,’’ May 20, 2009. On January 28, 2009, we extended the time limit for the preliminary results in this review until June 1, 2009. See Stainless Steel Plate in Coils From Belgium: Extension of Time Limit for Preliminary Results of the Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 74 FR 4940 (January 28, 2009). Scope of the Order The products covered by the order are imports of certain stainless steel plate in coils. Stainless steel is an alloy steel containing, by weight, 1.2 percent or less of carbon and 10.5 percent or more of chromium, with or without other elements. The subject plate products are flat-rolled products, 254 mm or over in width and 4.75 mm or more in thickness, in coils, and annealed or otherwise heat treated and pickled or otherwise descaled. The subject plate may also be further processed (e.g., cold-rolled, polished, etc.) provided that it maintains the specified dimensions of plate following such processing. Excluded from the scope of the order are the following: (1) plate not in coils, (2) plate that is not annealed or otherwise heat treated and pickled or otherwise descaled, (3) sheet and strip, and (4) flat bars. The merchandise subject to the order is currently classifiable in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (‘‘HTSUS’’) at subheadings: 7219.11.00.30, 7219.11.00.60, 7219.12.00.05, 7219.12.00.06, 7219.12.00.20, 7219.12.00.21, 7219.12.00.25, 7219.12.00.26, 7219.12.00.50, 7219.12.00.51, 7219.12.00.55, 7219.12.00.56, 7219.12.00.65, 7219.12.00.66, 7219.12.00.70, 7219.12.00.71, 7219.12.00.80, 7219.12.00.81, 7219.31.00.10, 7219.90.00.10, 7219.90.00.20, 7219.90.00.25, 7219.90.00.60, 7219.90.00.80, 7220.11.00.00, 7220.20.10.10, 7220.20.10.15, 7220.20.10.60, 7220.20.10.80, 7220.20.60.05, 7220.20.60.10, 7220.20.60.15, 7220.20.60.60, 7220.20.60.80, 7220.90.00.10, 7220.90.00.15, 7220.90.00.60, and 7220.90.00.80. Although the HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the Department’s written description of the scope of the order remains dispositive. Period of Review The period for which we are measuring subsidies, i.e., the POR, is E:\FR\FM\04JNN1.SGM 04JNN1 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 106 / Thursday, June 4, 2009 / Notices January 1, 2007, through December 31, 2007. Changes in Ownership In the CVD investigation that resulted in the order, we examined a single producer/exporter of the subject merchandise, ALZ N.V. ALZ N.V. was owned by Sidmar N.V. See Final Affirmative Countervailing Duty Determination; Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium, 64 FR 15567 (March 31, 1999) (‘‘SSPC from Belgium Investigation’’); See also Stainless Steel Plate in Coils From Belgium: Final Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 66 FR 45007 (August 27, 2001), and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum (‘‘SSPC from Belgium First Review’’). In the most recent review, we recognized that Sidmar N.V. had transferred its shares in ALZ N.V. to Arcelor S.A., which was formed in the 2002 merger of Sidmar N.V.’s parent, Arbed S.A., with Aceralia and Usinor S.A., and the company formerly named ALZ N.V. had become U&A Belgium. See Stainless Steel Plate in Coils From Belgium: Preliminary Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 73 FR 32303 (June 6, 2008); unchanged in Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium: Final Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 73 FR 75673 (December 12, 2008) (‘‘2006 SSPC Final’’). In the current POR, U&A Belgium changed its name to AMS Belgium. AMS Belgium is wholly owned by ArcelorMittal S.A. as a result of the November 13, 2007, merger of Arcelor S.A. and Mittal Steel N.V. Effective June 30, 2003, the Department adopted a new methodology for analyzing privatizations in the CVD context. See Notice of Final Modification of Agency Practice Under Section 123 of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act, 68 FR 37125 (June 23, 2003). The Department’s methodology is based on a rebuttable ‘‘baseline’’ presumption that non–recurring, allocable subsidies continue to benefit the subsidy recipient throughout the allocation period (which normally corresponds to the average useful life (‘‘AUL’’) of the recipient’s assets). Id., at 37127. However, an interested party may rebut this baseline presumption by demonstrating that, during the allocation period, a change in ownership occurred in which the former owner sold all or substantially all of a company or its assets, retaining no control of the company or its assets, and that the sale was an arm’s length transaction for fair market value. Id. VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:16 Jun 03, 2009 Jkt 217001 As explained above, AMS Belgium’s ownership changed during the AUL period as a result of various mergers. However, AMS Belgium has not attempted to rebut the Department’s baseline presumption that the nonrecurring, allocable subsidies received prior to any changes in ownership continue to benefit the company throughout the allocation period. See AMS QR at page 13. Allocation Period and Attribution In prior reviews, the Department attributed subsidies received by Sidmar N.V. to ALZ N.V., in accordance with 19 CFR 351.525(b)(6)(iii), because ALZ N.V. was a fully consolidated subsidiary of Sidmar N.V. In SSPC from Belgium Investigation, in accordance with a U.S. Court of International Trade (‘‘CIT’’) decision, we calculated company-specific allocation periods for non-recurring subsidies using company-specific AUL data. See British Steel plc v. United States, 929 F. Supp. 426, 439 (CIT 1996). We determined that the AUL for ALZ N.V. was 15 years, and that the AUL for Sidmar N.V. was 19 years. See SSPC from Belgium Investigation, 64 FR at 15568. In the first administrative review, the Department adopted new CVD regulations, which were applicable to the review, and determined to use a 15– year AUL for the review including any new subsidies received by Sidmar N.V. See SSPC from Belgium First Review, and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum at Comment 2. See 19 CFR 351.524(d)(2). However, with respect to non-recurring subsidies received prior to the first administrative review which had already been countervailed and allocated based on an allocation period established in SSPC from Belgium Investigation, we continued to allocate those nonrecurring subsidies over 19 years for Sidmar N.V. As we noted at the time, this methodology was consistent with our approach in Certain Carbon Steel Products from Sweden; Final Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 62 FR 16549 (April 7, 1997) and Certain Pasta From Italy: Final Results of the Third Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 66 FR 11269 (February 23, 2001) and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum at ‘‘Allocation Period.’’ See SSPC from Belgium First Review, and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum at Comment 2. In the current administrative review, AMS Belgium has not commented on the Department’s use of the 15-year AUL period or the use of a 19-year AUL for PO 00000 Frm 00015 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 26845 Sidmar N.V.’s non-recurring subsidies received by the company in the investigation. For the preliminary results, we are using a 15-year AUL for AMS Belgium, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.524(d)(2). The subsidy benefits previously found to have been received by Sidmar N.V. in the investigation and allocated over the 19-year AUL have been fully allocated and, therefore, are not included in the CVD rate established in this review. Analysis of Programs I. Programs Preliminarily Determined Not to Have Been Used or Not to Have Provided Benefits We examined the following programs and preliminarily determine that AMS Belgium did not apply for or receive benefits under these programs during the POR: A. Government of Belgium Programs 1. Subsidies Provided to Sidmar that are Potentially Attributable to ALZ N.V.: a. Water Purification Grants 2. Societe Nationale pour la Reconstruction des Secteurs Nationaux 3. Regional Subsidies under the 1970 Law Investment and Interest Subsidies 4. Regional Subsidies under the Economic Expansion Law of 1970 a. Expansion Real Estate Tax Exemption b. Accelerated Depreciation 5. Reduced Social Security Contributions Pursuant to the Maribel Scheme (Article 35 of the Law of June 29, 1981) 6. 1987 ALZ Common Share Transaction Between the GOB and Sidmar (also identified as 1985 ALZ Share Subscriptions and Subsequent Transactions in the CVD Order) 7. Industrial Reconversion Zones: a. Alfin b. Albufin 8. Belgian Industrial Finance Company (‘‘Belfin’’) Loans 9. Societe Nationale de Credite a l’Industrie (‘‘SNCI’’) Loans 10. Conversion of Sidmar’s Debt to Equity (OCPC-to-PB) in 1985 11. SidInvest Conditional Refundable Advances B. Government of Flanders Programs 1. Regional subsidies under the 1970 Law a. Corporate Income Tax Exemption b. Capital Registration Tax Exemption c. Government Loan Guarantees d. 1993 Expansion Grant 2. Special Depreciation Allowance E:\FR\FM\04JNN1.SGM 04JNN1 26846 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 106 / Thursday, June 4, 2009 / Notices 3. Preferential Short–Term Export Credit 4. Interest Rate Rebates C. Programs of the European Commission 1. ECSC Article 54 Loans and Interest Rebates 2. ECSC Article 56 Conversion Loans, Interest Rebates and Redeployment Aid 3. European Social Fund Grants 4. European Regional Development Fund Grants 5. Resider II Program II. Issues for Which More Information is Required On May 4, 2009, the Department sought information from the GOB concerning a research and development program administered by the Institute for the Promotion of Innovation by Science and Technology in Flanders. See March 4, 2009 AMS Belgium supplemental questionnaire response at pages 12–14 and Appendices S–5 and S–12 through S–17. In the previous review, the Department stated that it would defer examination of this program until a future review. See 2006 SSPC Final, and accompanying ‘‘Issues and Decision Memorandum for the Final Results of the Eighth (2006) Administrative Review of the Countervailing Duty Order on Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium’’ in the ‘‘Analysis of Programs’’ section. On May 8, 2009, the GOB requested, and we granted, an extension to file its supplemental response on this program. As a result, we will not receive the GOB’s supplemental response until after the preliminary results of this review are issued. After reviewing the documentation receive to date, we have determined that we do not have sufficient information to make a finding regarding this program at this time. After we receive the GOB’s supplemental questionnaire response, we intend to issue an interim analysis providing preliminary findings with respect to this program so that parties will have the opportunity to comment. Preliminary Results of Review We preliminarily find that AMS Belgium, the only producer/exporter subject to this administrative review, had no countervailable subsidies during the POR. Therefore, for the period January 1, 2007, through December 31, 2007, we preliminarily determine the net subsidy rate for AMS Belgium to be 0.00 percent ad valorem. Consequently, if these preliminary results are adopted in our final results of this review, the Department will instruct U.S. Customs VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:16 Jun 03, 2009 Jkt 217001 and Border Protection (‘‘CBP’’) to liquidate shipments of SSPC by AMS Belgium2 entered or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption from January 1, 2007, through December 31, 2007, without regard to countervailing duties. See 19 CFR 351.106(c)(1). We intend to issue these instructions 15 days after publication of the final results of this review. The final results of this review shall be the basis for future deposits of estimated duties. If the cash deposit rate calculated in the final results is zero or de minimis, no cash deposit will be required. The cash deposit requirement, when imposed, shall remain in effect until further notice. We will instruct CBP to continue to collect cash deposits for non–reviewed companies covered by the order at the most recent company–specific rate applicable to the company. Accordingly, the cash deposit rate that will be applied to non–reviewed companies covered by the order will be the rate for that company established in the investigation or most recent administrative review. The ‘‘all others’’ rate shall apply to all non–reviewed companies that have not received an individual rate. Public Comment Interested parties may submit written arguments in case briefs no later than one week after the issuance of the interim analysis. See 19 CFR 351.309(c). Rebuttal briefs, limited to issues raised in case briefs, may be filed not later than five days after the date of filing the case briefs. See 19 CFR 351.309(d). Parties who submit briefs in this proceeding should provide a summary of the arguments not to exceed five pages and a table of statutes, regulations, and cases cited. See 19 CFR 351.309(c)(2) and (d)(2). Copies of case briefs and rebuttal briefs must be served on interested parties in accordance with 19 CFR 351.303(f). 2 During the current review AMS Belgium has placed the following information on the record. In 2006, U&A Belgium’s parent company, Arcelor S.A., agreed to merge with Mittal Steel N.V. This merger was completed on November 13, 2007. As a result of this merger, U&A Belgium became AMS Belgium on November 13, 2007. The Department has reviewed the information provided by AMS Belgium with regard to the merger and evaluated the company and its affiliates for receipt of countervailable subsidies. In addition, we have reviewed entry data provided by CBP to confirm that U&A Belgium is the only manufacturer of subject merchandise exported from Belgium during the POR. For countervailing duty review purposes, we will consider U&A Belgium to be AMS Belgium for cash deposit purposes. Since the merger happened during the POR, we will issue assessment instructions for both U&A Belgium and AMS Belgium. PO 00000 Frm 00016 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Interested parties may request a hearing within 30 days after the date of publication of this notice. See 19 CFR 351.310(c). Unless otherwise specified, the hearing, if requested, will be held two days after the scheduled date for submission of rebuttal briefs. See 19 CFR 351.310(d)(1). The Department will publish a notice of the final results of this administrative review within 120 days from the publication of these preliminary results. See section 751(a)(3)(A) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (‘‘Act’’). We are issuing and publishing these results in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act. Dated: May 28, 2009. Ronald K. Lorentzen, Acting Assistant Secretary for Import Administration. [FR Doc. E9–13066 Filed 6–3–09; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–DS–S DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [C–552–805] Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bags from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam: Postponement of Preliminary Determination in the Countervailing Duty Investigation AGENCY: Import Administration, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce. EFFECTIVE DATE: June 4, 2009. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Gene Calvert or Jun Jack Zhao, AD/CVD Operations, Office 6, Import Administration, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482–3586 and (202) 482–1396, respectively. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background On April 20, 2009, the Department of Commerce (the Department) initiated the countervailing duty investigation of polyethylene retail carrier bags from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. See Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bags from Vietnam: Initiation of Countervailing Duty Investigation and Request for Public Comment on the Application of the Countervailing Duty Law on Imports From the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, 74 FR 19064 (April 27, 2009). Currently, the preliminary determination is due no later than June 24, 2009. E:\FR\FM\04JNN1.SGM 04JNN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 74, Number 106 (Thursday, June 4, 2009)]
[Notices]
[Pages 26844-26846]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E9-13066]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

International Trade Administration

[C-423-809]


Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium: Preliminary Results 
of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review

AGENCY: Import Administration, International Trade Administration, 
Department of Commerce.

SUMMARY: The Department of Commerce is conducting an administrative 
review of the countervailing duty order on stainless steel plate in 
coils from Belgium for the period January 1, 2007, through December 31, 
2007. We preliminarily find that ArcelorMittal Stainless Belgium N.V. 
(``AMS Belgium'') did not receive any countervailable subsidies in this 
review and its rate is, consequently, zero. Interested parties are 
invited to comment on these preliminary results.

EFFECTIVE DATE: June 4, 2009.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: David Layton or Alexander Montoro, AD/
CVD Operations, Office 1, Import Administration, U.S. Department of 
Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 
20230; telephone: (202) 482-0371 and (202) 482-0238, respectively.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    On May 11, 1999, the Department of Commerce (``the Department'') 
published a countervailing duty order (``CVD'') on stainless steel 
plate in coils (``SSPC'') from Belgium. See Notice of Amended Final 
Determinations: Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium and South 
Africa; and Notice of Countervailing Duty Orders: Stainless Steel Plate 
in Coils from Belgium, Italy and South Africa, 64 FR 25288 (May 11, 
1999) (``CVD Order''). On March 11, 2003, as a result of litigation, 
the Department published an amended CVD order on stainless steel plate 
in coils from Belgium. See Notice of Amended Countervailing Duty 
Orders; Certain Stainless Steel Plate in Coils From Belgium, Italy, and 
South Africa, 68 FR 11524 (March 11, 2003). On May 5, 2008, the 
Department published a notice of ``Opportunity to Request 
Administrative Review'' for this CVD order. See Antidumping or 
Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; 
Opportunity To Request Administrative Review, 73 FR 24532 (May 5, 
2008). On June 2, 2008, we received a request for review from Ugine & 
ALZ Belgium (``U&A Belgium''), a Belgian producer of SSPC.\1\ In 
accordance with 19 CFR 351.221(c)(1)(i), we published a notice of 
initiation of the review on July 1, 2008, covering the period January 
1, 2007 through December 31, 2007. See Initiation of Antidumping and 
Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews and Requests for Revocation 
in Part, 73 FR 37409 (July 1, 2008).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ The review was originally requested by U&A Belgium. The 
company previously known as U&A Belgium stated in questionnaire 
responses that its name changed to ArcelorMittal Stainless Belgium 
(``AMS Belgium'') during the period of review (``POR'') pursuant to 
the merger of Mittal Steel NV with Arcelor S.A. completed on 
November 11, 2007. See AMS Belgium Questionnaire Response dated 
October 22, 2008 (``AMS QR'') at page 1, footnote 1, and page 4, 
footnote 2.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    On August 18, 2008, we issued CVD questionnaires to the Government 
of Belgium (``GOB''), the Commission of the European Union (``EC''), 
and U&A Belgium. We received responses to these questionnaires on 
October 15, 2008, from the EC and on October 22, 2008, from the GOB and 
AMS Belgium (formerly U&A Belgium). On January 28, 2009, we issued 
supplemental questionnaires to the GOB and AMS Belgium. We received 
responses for the supplemental questionnaires from both the GOB and AMS 
Belgium on March 4, 2009. On April 16, 2009, we issued a second 
supplemental questionnaire to AMS Belgium, and we received its response 
on April 22, 2009. On May 4, 2009, we issued a second supplemental 
questionnaire to the GOB. On May 8, 2009, the GOB requested an 
extension to file its supplemental response, which we granted. See 
Memorandum from Susan Kuhbach to file, entitled ``SSPC from Belgium - 
Meeting with GOB,'' May 20, 2009.
    On January 28, 2009, we extended the time limit for the preliminary 
results in this review until June 1, 2009. See Stainless Steel Plate in 
Coils From Belgium: Extension of Time Limit for Preliminary Results of 
the Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 74 FR 4940 (January 28, 
2009).

Scope of the Order

    The products covered by the order are imports of certain stainless 
steel plate in coils. Stainless steel is an alloy steel containing, by 
weight, 1.2 percent or less of carbon and 10.5 percent or more of 
chromium, with or without other elements. The subject plate products 
are flat-rolled products, 254 mm or over in width and 4.75 mm or more 
in thickness, in coils, and annealed or otherwise heat treated and 
pickled or otherwise descaled. The subject plate may also be further 
processed (e.g., cold-rolled, polished, etc.) provided that it 
maintains the specified dimensions of plate following such processing. 
Excluded from the scope of the order are the following: (1) plate not 
in coils, (2) plate that is not annealed or otherwise heat treated and 
pickled or otherwise descaled, (3) sheet and strip, and (4) flat bars.
    The merchandise subject to the order is currently classifiable in 
the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (``HTSUS'') at 
subheadings: 7219.11.00.30, 7219.11.00.60, 7219.12.00.05, 
7219.12.00.06, 7219.12.00.20, 7219.12.00.21, 7219.12.00.25, 
7219.12.00.26, 7219.12.00.50, 7219.12.00.51, 7219.12.00.55, 
7219.12.00.56, 7219.12.00.65, 7219.12.00.66, 7219.12.00.70, 
7219.12.00.71, 7219.12.00.80, 7219.12.00.81, 7219.31.00.10, 
7219.90.00.10, 7219.90.00.20, 7219.90.00.25, 7219.90.00.60, 
7219.90.00.80, 7220.11.00.00, 7220.20.10.10, 7220.20.10.15, 
7220.20.10.60, 7220.20.10.80, 7220.20.60.05, 7220.20.60.10, 
7220.20.60.15, 7220.20.60.60, 7220.20.60.80, 7220.90.00.10, 
7220.90.00.15, 7220.90.00.60, and 7220.90.00.80. Although the HTSUS 
subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the 
Department's written description of the scope of the order remains 
dispositive.

Period of Review

    The period for which we are measuring subsidies, i.e., the POR, is

[[Page 26845]]

January 1, 2007, through December 31, 2007.

Changes in Ownership

    In the CVD investigation that resulted in the order, we examined a 
single producer/exporter of the subject merchandise, ALZ N.V. ALZ N.V. 
was owned by Sidmar N.V. See Final Affirmative Countervailing Duty 
Determination; Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium, 64 FR 15567 
(March 31, 1999) (``SSPC from Belgium Investigation''); See also 
Stainless Steel Plate in Coils From Belgium: Final Results of 
Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 66 FR 45007 (August 27, 
2001), and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum (``SSPC from 
Belgium First Review'').
    In the most recent review, we recognized that Sidmar N.V. had 
transferred its shares in ALZ N.V. to Arcelor S.A., which was formed in 
the 2002 merger of Sidmar N.V.'s parent, Arbed S.A., with Aceralia and 
Usinor S.A., and the company formerly named ALZ N.V. had become U&A 
Belgium. See Stainless Steel Plate in Coils From Belgium: Preliminary 
Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 73 FR 32303 (June 
6, 2008); unchanged in Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium: 
Final Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, 73 FR 75673 
(December 12, 2008) (``2006 SSPC Final'').
    In the current POR, U&A Belgium changed its name to AMS Belgium. 
AMS Belgium is wholly owned by ArcelorMittal S.A. as a result of the 
November 13, 2007, merger of Arcelor S.A. and Mittal Steel N.V.
    Effective June 30, 2003, the Department adopted a new methodology 
for analyzing privatizations in the CVD context. See Notice of Final 
Modification of Agency Practice Under Section 123 of the Uruguay Round 
Agreements Act, 68 FR 37125 (June 23, 2003). The Department's 
methodology is based on a rebuttable ``baseline'' presumption that non-
recurring, allocable subsidies continue to benefit the subsidy 
recipient throughout the allocation period (which normally corresponds 
to the average useful life (``AUL'') of the recipient's assets). Id., 
at 37127. However, an interested party may rebut this baseline 
presumption by demonstrating that, during the allocation period, a 
change in ownership occurred in which the former owner sold all or 
substantially all of a company or its assets, retaining no control of 
the company or its assets, and that the sale was an arm's length 
transaction for fair market value. Id.
    As explained above, AMS Belgium's ownership changed during the AUL 
period as a result of various mergers. However, AMS Belgium has not 
attempted to rebut the Department's baseline presumption that the non-
recurring, allocable subsidies received prior to any changes in 
ownership continue to benefit the company throughout the allocation 
period. See AMS QR at page 13.

Allocation Period and Attribution

    In prior reviews, the Department attributed subsidies received by 
Sidmar N.V. to ALZ N.V., in accordance with 19 CFR 351.525(b)(6)(iii), 
because ALZ N.V. was a fully consolidated subsidiary of Sidmar N.V.
    In SSPC from Belgium Investigation, in accordance with a U.S. Court 
of International Trade (``CIT'') decision, we calculated company-
specific allocation periods for non-recurring subsidies using company-
specific AUL data. See British Steel plc v. United States, 929 F. Supp. 
426, 439 (CIT 1996). We determined that the AUL for ALZ N.V. was 15 
years, and that the AUL for Sidmar N.V. was 19 years. See SSPC from 
Belgium Investigation, 64 FR at 15568.
    In the first administrative review, the Department adopted new CVD 
regulations, which were applicable to the review, and determined to use 
a 15-year AUL for the review including any new subsidies received by 
Sidmar N.V. See SSPC from Belgium First Review, and accompanying Issues 
and Decision Memorandum at Comment 2. See 19 CFR 351.524(d)(2). 
However, with respect to non-recurring subsidies received prior to the 
first administrative review which had already been countervailed and 
allocated based on an allocation period established in SSPC from 
Belgium Investigation, we continued to allocate those non-recurring 
subsidies over 19 years for Sidmar N.V. As we noted at the time, this 
methodology was consistent with our approach in Certain Carbon Steel 
Products from Sweden; Final Results of Countervailing Duty 
Administrative Review, 62 FR 16549 (April 7, 1997) and Certain Pasta 
From Italy: Final Results of the Third Countervailing Duty 
Administrative Review, 66 FR 11269 (February 23, 2001) and accompanying 
Issues and Decision Memorandum at ``Allocation Period.'' See SSPC from 
Belgium First Review, and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum 
at Comment 2.
    In the current administrative review, AMS Belgium has not commented 
on the Department's use of the 15-year AUL period or the use of a 19-
year AUL for Sidmar N.V.'s non-recurring subsidies received by the 
company in the investigation. For the preliminary results, we are using 
a 15-year AUL for AMS Belgium, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.524(d)(2). 
The subsidy benefits previously found to have been received by Sidmar 
N.V. in the investigation and allocated over the 19-year AUL have been 
fully allocated and, therefore, are not included in the CVD rate 
established in this review.

Analysis of Programs

I. Programs Preliminarily Determined Not to Have Been Used or Not to 
Have Provided Benefits

    We examined the following programs and preliminarily determine that 
AMS Belgium did not apply for or receive benefits under these programs 
during the POR:

A. Government of Belgium Programs

    1. Subsidies Provided to Sidmar that are Potentially Attributable 
to ALZ N.V.:
    a. Water Purification Grants
    2. Societe Nationale pour la Reconstruction des Secteurs Nationaux
    3. Regional Subsidies under the 1970 Law Investment and Interest 
Subsidies
    4. Regional Subsidies under the Economic Expansion Law of 1970
    a. Expansion Real Estate Tax Exemption
    b. Accelerated Depreciation
    5. Reduced Social Security Contributions Pursuant to the Maribel 
Scheme (Article 35 of the Law of June 29, 1981)
    6. 1987 ALZ Common Share Transaction Between the GOB and Sidmar 
(also identified as 1985 ALZ Share Subscriptions and Subsequent 
Transactions in the CVD Order)
    7. Industrial Reconversion Zones:
    a. Alfin
    b. Albufin
    8. Belgian Industrial Finance Company (``Belfin'') Loans
    9. Societe Nationale de Credite a l'Industrie (``SNCI'') Loans
    10. Conversion of Sidmar's Debt to Equity (OCPC-to-PB) in 1985
    11. SidInvest Conditional Refundable Advances

B. Government of Flanders Programs

    1. Regional subsidies under the 1970 Law
    a. Corporate Income Tax Exemption
    b. Capital Registration Tax Exemption
    c. Government Loan Guarantees
    d. 1993 Expansion Grant
    2. Special Depreciation Allowance

[[Page 26846]]

    3. Preferential Short-Term Export Credit
    4. Interest Rate Rebates

C. Programs of the European Commission

    1. ECSC Article 54 Loans and Interest Rebates
    2. ECSC Article 56 Conversion Loans, Interest Rebates and 
Redeployment Aid
    3. European Social Fund Grants
    4. European Regional Development Fund Grants
    5. Resider II Program

II. Issues for Which More Information is Required

    On May 4, 2009, the Department sought information from the GOB 
concerning a research and development program administered by the 
Institute for the Promotion of Innovation by Science and Technology in 
Flanders. See March 4, 2009 AMS Belgium supplemental questionnaire 
response at pages 12-14 and Appendices S-5 and S-12 through S-17. In 
the previous review, the Department stated that it would defer 
examination of this program until a future review. See 2006 SSPC Final, 
and accompanying ``Issues and Decision Memorandum for the Final Results 
of the Eighth (2006) Administrative Review of the Countervailing Duty 
Order on Stainless Steel Plate in Coils from Belgium'' in the 
``Analysis of Programs'' section. On May 8, 2009, the GOB requested, 
and we granted, an extension to file its supplemental response on this 
program. As a result, we will not receive the GOB's supplemental 
response until after the preliminary results of this review are issued.
    After reviewing the documentation receive to date, we have 
determined that we do not have sufficient information to make a finding 
regarding this program at this time. After we receive the GOB's 
supplemental questionnaire response, we intend to issue an interim 
analysis providing preliminary findings with respect to this program so 
that parties will have the opportunity to comment.

Preliminary Results of Review

    We preliminarily find that AMS Belgium, the only producer/exporter 
subject to this administrative review, had no countervailable subsidies 
during the POR. Therefore, for the period January 1, 2007, through 
December 31, 2007, we preliminarily determine the net subsidy rate for 
AMS Belgium to be 0.00 percent ad valorem. Consequently, if these 
preliminary results are adopted in our final results of this review, 
the Department will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection 
(``CBP'') to liquidate shipments of SSPC by AMS Belgium\2\ entered or 
withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption from January 1, 2007, through 
December 31, 2007, without regard to countervailing duties. See 19 CFR 
351.106(c)(1). We intend to issue these instructions 15 days after 
publication of the final results of this review.
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    \2\ During the current review AMS Belgium has placed the 
following information on the record. In 2006, U&A Belgium's parent 
company, Arcelor S.A., agreed to merge with Mittal Steel N.V. This 
merger was completed on November 13, 2007. As a result of this 
merger, U&A Belgium became AMS Belgium on November 13, 2007. The 
Department has reviewed the information provided by AMS Belgium with 
regard to the merger and evaluated the company and its affiliates 
for receipt of countervailable subsidies. In addition, we have 
reviewed entry data provided by CBP to confirm that U&A Belgium is 
the only manufacturer of subject merchandise exported from Belgium 
during the POR. For countervailing duty review purposes, we will 
consider U&A Belgium to be AMS Belgium for cash deposit purposes. 
Since the merger happened during the POR, we will issue assessment 
instructions for both U&A Belgium and AMS Belgium.
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    The final results of this review shall be the basis for future 
deposits of estimated duties. If the cash deposit rate calculated in 
the final results is zero or de minimis, no cash deposit will be 
required. The cash deposit requirement, when imposed, shall remain in 
effect until further notice.
    We will instruct CBP to continue to collect cash deposits for non-
reviewed companies covered by the order at the most recent company-
specific rate applicable to the company. Accordingly, the cash deposit 
rate that will be applied to non-reviewed companies covered by the 
order will be the rate for that company established in the 
investigation or most recent administrative review. The ``all others'' 
rate shall apply to all non-reviewed companies that have not received 
an individual rate.

Public Comment

    Interested parties may submit written arguments in case briefs no 
later than one week after the issuance of the interim analysis. See 19 
CFR 351.309(c). Rebuttal briefs, limited to issues raised in case 
briefs, may be filed not later than five days after the date of filing 
the case briefs. See 19 CFR 351.309(d). Parties who submit briefs in 
this proceeding should provide a summary of the arguments not to exceed 
five pages and a table of statutes, regulations, and cases cited. See 
19 CFR 351.309(c)(2) and (d)(2). Copies of case briefs and rebuttal 
briefs must be served on interested parties in accordance with 19 CFR 
351.303(f).
    Interested parties may request a hearing within 30 days after the 
date of publication of this notice. See 19 CFR 351.310(c). Unless 
otherwise specified, the hearing, if requested, will be held two days 
after the scheduled date for submission of rebuttal briefs. See 19 CFR 
351.310(d)(1).
    The Department will publish a notice of the final results of this 
administrative review within 120 days from the publication of these 
preliminary results. See section 751(a)(3)(A) of the Tariff Act of 
1930, as amended (``Act'').
    We are issuing and publishing these results in accordance with 
sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act.

    Dated: May 28, 2009.
Ronald K. Lorentzen,
Acting Assistant Secretary for Import Administration.
[FR Doc. E9-13066 Filed 6-3-09; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-DS-S