PORTLAND, OR— Protesting the hardwood plywood antidumping petition, a group of U.S. companies has formed the American Alliance of Hardwood Plywood (AAHP) to ensure the availability of the “unique” plywood product imported from China.
The AAHP says the hardwood plywood product manufactured in China uses thinner veneer than that which is manufactured in the United States. Hardwood plywood is used in a variety of products including furniture, cabinetry and components.
AAHP is comprised American importers, distributors, manufacturers and retailers, with Greg Simon of Far East American and Gregg Wilkinson of Liberty Woods International listed as co-chairs of the coalition. In addition to Far East American and Liberty Woods, other members listed on the website include: American Pacific Plywood Inc., Benchmark International, Canusa Wood Products Ltd., Holland, Ike Trading Co. Ltd., InterGlobal Forest, Laminate Technologies, McCorry Group, Medallion Forest Products, Northwest Hardwoods, Patriot Timber Products, Plywood Tropics USA Inc., Taraca Pacific, TigerPly and US Ply.
The AAHP says on its website that, if successful, the antidumping petition “will destroy thousands of American jobs and limit the ability of U.S. manufacturers to compete in the global marketplace.” A press release issued by the group claims the hardwood plywood product under debate is “not manufactured in the U.S. and would otherwise be unavailable to U.S. customers.”
The companies asking for extraordinary import barriers consist of several of the world’s largest hardwood plywood manufacturers who collectively comprise 80 percent of the U.S. hardwood plywood market. These companies are seeking to increase their market share by driving up the price of imported hardwood used by U.S. manufacturers by more than 300 percent through an unfair and punitive tariff on plywood imported from China,” the AAHP website states.
"People need to understand that due to several factors including fiber sources and the manual manufacturing practice employed by the Chinese, this product has significantly thinner veneer than any hardwood plywood manufactured in the U.S.,” Simon said in a statement. “For those businesses that manufacture products requiring a thinner veneer, this is their only option."
He added, "There are over 1,000 U.S. companies, most of which are small businesses that rely on the importation of this type of hardwood plywood to be competitive in the global marketplace. The approval of this tariff would severely jeopardize these companies and the tens of thousands of U.S. jobs they support."
The antidumping petition was filed Sept. 27 by The Coalition for Fair Trade of Hardwood Plywood, a group that includes Columbia Forest Products, Commonwealth Plywood Co. Ltd., Murphy Plywood, Roseburg Forest Products Co., States Industries LLC and Timber Products Co.
The petition is scheduled to debate at a hearing before the International Trade Commission on Oct. 18. According to the Federal Register, preliminary determination in the antidumping and countervailing duty investigations will be made by the ITC by Nov. 13, with the ITC’s views due at the Department of Commerce by Nov. 19.
By Karen M. Koenig