989 F.Supp. 253 (CIT. 1997), 96-10-02398, SKW Stickstoffwerke Piesteritz GmbH v. United States

Docket Nº:96-10-02398.
Citation:989 F.Supp. 253
Party Name:SKW STICKSTOFFWERKE PIESTERITZ GmbH, Plaintiff, v. The UNITED STATES, Defendant, and Agrium (US), Inc., Defendant-Intervenor, and Ad Hoc Committee of Domestic Nitrogen Producers, Defendant-Intervenor. Slip Op. 97-165.
Case Date:December 03, 1997
Court:Court of International Trade
 
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Page 253

989 F.Supp. 253 (CIT. 1997)

SKW STICKSTOFFWERKE PIESTERITZ GmbH, Plaintiff,

v.

The UNITED STATES, Defendant,

and

Agrium (US), Inc., Defendant-Intervenor,

and

Ad Hoc Committee of Domestic Nitrogen Producers, Defendant-Intervenor.

Slip Op. 97-165.

No. 96-10-02398.

United States Court of International Trade.

Dec. 3, 1997

Page 254

Winthrop, Stimson, Putnam & Roberts, Christopher R. Wall, Mark A. Monborne, David S. Christy, Jr., Washington, DC, for Plaintiff.

Frank W. Hunger, Assistant Attorney General, David M. Cohen, Director, Velta A. Melnbrencis, Assistant Director, U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Div., Commercial Litigation Branch, (Duane W. Layton, of counsel, Office of the Chief Counsel for Import Administration, U.S. Dep't of Commerce), for Defendant.

Junker & Thompson, P.C., Joel E. Junker, Lindsay T. Thompson, Seattle, WA, for Defendant-Intervenor Agrium (US), Incorporated.

Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld, L.L.P., Valerie A. Slater, Katherine M. Ho, Washington, DC, for Defendant-Intervenor Ad Hoc Committee of Domestic Nitrogen Producers.

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

WALLACH, Judge.

I

INTRODUCTION

Plaintiff SKW Stickstoffwerke Piesteritz GmbH ("SKWP") challenges the Department of Commerce's ("Commerce") decision in Solid Urea From the German Democratic Republic: Termination of Changed Circumstances Review, 61 Fed.Reg. 49436 (September 20, 1996) ("Termination"). SKWP claims that Commerce acted contrary to law when it terminated the Changed Circumstances Review as a result of the initiation of an Administrative Review. According to SKWP, once the Changed Circumstances Review was commenced, Commerce was obligated by statute and its own regulation to complete it. For the reasons discussed below, the Court holds that Commerce's decision to terminate the Changed Circumstances Review is reasonable and denies SKWP's Motion For Judgment On The Agency Record.

Page 255

II

BACKGROUND

On July 14, 1987, Commerce published an antidumping duty order subjecting solid urea from what was then the German Democratic Republic ("GDR") to the assessment of antidumping duties and deposits of estimated antidumping duties. Antidumping Duty Order; Urea From the German Democratic Republic, 52 Fed.Reg. 26366 ("Antidumping Order"). Since the reunification of the GDR, a state-controlled, non-market economy country, and the Federal Republic of Germany ("FRG"), a democratically-governed, market-oriented economy, on October 3, 1990, Commerce has initiated three changed circumstances reviews of the Antidumping Order.

The purpose of the first changed circumstances review was "to examine the effect of unification on the antidumping duty order from the [GDR], specifically its applicability to post unification shipments of the subject merchandise from producers located in the pre-unification area of the Federal Republic." Solid Urea From the German Democratic Republic; Initiation of Changed Circumstances Antidumping Duty Administrative Review, 57 Fed.Reg. 5130 (Feb. 12, 1992). Commerce preliminarily determined that it should maintain the Antidumping Order on solid urea from the former GDR states but allowed entry of shipments from the remaining German states without subjecting them to the Order. Solid Urea From the [GDR]; Preliminary Results of Changed Circumstances Review and Initiation of Changed Circumstances Antidumping Duty Administrative Review, 60 Fed.Reg. 21067 (May 1, 1995) ("Preliminary Results"). The Final Determination is still pending.

In the Preliminary Results, Commerce found "that there is good cause for conducting a second changed circumstances review to calculate a new cash deposit rate using a market economy analysis...." Id. at 21067. However, the second changed circumstances review was terminated because Commerce found that urea was not imported during that time period. Solid Urea From the [GDR]: Termination of Changed Circumstances Review, 61 Fed.Reg. 10563 (March 14, 1996) ("Prior Termination").

Commerce initiated the third changed circumstances review which SKWP is contesting here, to "calculate a new cash deposit rate using a market economy analysis for any shipments of solid urea from the [former GDR] occurring after May 1, 1995, and before May 31, 1996." Solid Urea From the Former German Democratic Republic; Initiation of Changed Circumstances Antidumping Duty Review, 61 Fed.Reg. 27049 (May 30, 1996) ("Changed Circumstances Review"). 1

Before Commerce completed its Changed Circumstances Review, however, the Ad Hoc Committee of Nitrogen Producers, petitioner in the original action and Defendant-Intervenor in this action, requested an administrative review of the Antidumping Order. As a result, Commerce initiated an administrative review covering shipments of solid urea by...

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