Volume 47, Issue 11 - November 2012

Legislation&Legal

Canadian Government Terminates Chinese Curtainwall Investigation
The Canada Border Services Agency's (CBSA) has decided to terminate its investigation of the alleged injurious dumping and subsidizing of certain unitized wall modules from China. The original complaint, filed in May, alleges “that the dumping and subsidizing of these goods are harming Canadian production by causing the following: lost sales, price erosion, price suppression, reduced profitability, loss of market share, reduced employment and underutilization of capacity.”

The complaint was filed by Allan Window Technologies of Concord, Ontario; Ferguson Neudorf Glass Inc. of Beamsville, Ontario; Flynn Canada Ltd. of Mississauga, Ontario; Inland Glass & Aluminum Ltd. of Kamloops, British Columbia; Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope of Concord, Ontario; Sota Glazing Inc. of Brampton, Ontario; Starline Architectural Windows Ltd. of Langley, British Columbia; and Toro Aluminum of Concord, Ontario.

The government’s decision to terminate the investigation has left some in the industry questioning why it chose to do so. Rich Porayko, a Vancouver-based marketing specialist who works with companies in the glazing industry, questioned the fact that the investigation was actually terminated two weeks before the original deadline of October 15.

“Now the investigation is terminated two weeks before the CBSA deadline without having the public hearings to do a proper, transparent investigation,” says Porayko. “It just doesn’t make sense. It sends a message to offshore manufacturers that we are open for business and it's okay to sewer the price.”

In mid-October, the CBSA released details on how it reached its conclusion, perhaps answering some of those questions. The CITT Tribunal found the evidence presented by Canada-based curtainwall manufacturers to be limited to only one example of a lost sale and price depression in relation to two of at least 25 domestic producers over a span of three years, according to the report. The timing of the losses to two domestic producers cannot explain the decreasing performance of the Canadian manufacturers, according to the release.

The CITT continues on to say it “cannot conclusively determine if the project-specific losses to two domestic producers might reasonably constitute injury to a major proportion of the total domestic production of like goods.”

CITT also states the complaints’ evidence does not support injury allegations of dumping and subsidizing because the alleged material accumulates to less than 2 percent of the total value of the market for unitized wall modules.

The CBSA originally began the investigation after several Canada-based curtainwall manufacturers filed a complaint against 97 China-based unitized wall module producers, 80 exporters and 17 importers, alleging that they had “caus[ed] injury and threaten[ed] to cause injury to the Canadian industry producing these goods.”

 

Court Rejects AAI Subcontract
The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania has granted general contractor Skanska USA's recent motion to order American Architectural Inc. (AAI) to resume or reject its subcontract related to work being done at the World Trade Center (WTC). The subcontract was rejected, as defined by the motion and took effect September 14, 2012.

Skanska USA had subcontracted AAI for the interior glass work and interior glass railing for the World Trade Center's PATH Hall. Skanska had alleged in its motion that "the quality of AAI's submittals have been deficient and durations in which it has taken them to complete the submittals have been excessive" on the project. As a result of the granted motion, AAI has returned all of the "materials and drawing (in CAD and PDF format)" for the PATH Hall Project to Skanska USA.

According to a court order, both parties came to the agreement that Skanska owes AAI $5,328,968 for their subcontracted work through September 14, 2012. This final payment includes but is not limited to monthly requisitions, change orders and extras performed up until the date of rejection.

With the exception of amounts due and owing to AAI under the subcontract, both parties also have been ordered to exchange mutual releases of all claims. This includes the final payment.

At press time, a separate motion, filed by AAI in an effort to sell its assets, including several subcontracts, remained under the review of the court.

USG
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