The U.S. Department of Commerce plans to impose tariffs on washing machines built by four major manufacturers after the agency found evidence of dumping.
Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics imported machines from Mexico and sold them for below fair market value, and Electrolux and Daewoo Electronics did the same for machines made in South Korea, the Commerce Department said Monday. The case, filed by Michigan-based Whirlpool, is the latest in a string of U.S. actions against what it says are unfair trade practices.
The agency is scheduled to make a final determination on the proposed tariffs, ranging from 9.6 percent to 72.4 percent, in December. Electrolux is based in Sweden, and the other three firms are South Korean.
Roughly $434 million in large residential washers were imported from Mexico in 2011, and about $598 million worth of similar machines were shipped to the U.S. from South Korea in the same year, according to the Commerce Department.
Whirlpool said it no longer produces washing machines in Mexico and will produce all such equipment in the U.S. by 2013, largely through recent investments in its Clyde, Ohio, plant.
"Whirlpool is committed to building products in the regions where they are sold and investing in our U.S. manufacturing presence. Our investments will continue as long as we can compete on a level playing field, with all of our foreign competitors playing by the established rules,” said spokesman Kristine Vernier.