U.S. Shrimp Industry Expresses Disappointment in Final ITC Vote on Shrimp Subsidy Cases

BILOXI, Miss., Sept. 20, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today the International Trade Commission (ITC) voted in the negative in the five pending shrimp subsidy cases against China, Ecuador, India, Malaysia, and Vietnam. As a result of this unfortunate decision, countervailing duties will not be imposed on imports of shrimp from these five nations, denying relief from unfair foreign imports to the thousands of Americans working in the U.S. shrimp industry.

The Coalition of Gulf Shrimp Industries (COGSI) filed petitions against subsidized shrimp imports on December 28, 2012. In August, the Department of Commerce found that shrimp producers in China, Ecuador, India, Malaysia and Vietnam were benefitting from dozens of subsidy programs, including numerous export subsidies, with subsidy margins ranging from 1.2 to 54.5 percent. Today, the ITC voted four to two that the U.S. was not injured by these imports and thus duties will not be imposed.

"I applaud the members of COGSI for leading the charge to restore fair trade in the shrimp industry. We filed these petitions because our industry is being hammered by large volumes of subsidized shrimp imports," said David Veal, executive director of COGSI. "The improved pricing we have seen in the market since the imposition of provisional duties on these imports in the spring of this year confirms how important relief from these subsidized imports is to the domestic industry. While the Commission did not vote in our favor today, we are not throwing in the towel on this vital issue," he added.

"Absent relief from subsidized imports, the culture, way of life, and economic opportunity provided by Gulf shrimp industry will continue to be in jeopardy," noted Eddy Hayes, Gulf counsel to the industry. "COGSI members are grateful to all of our champions on Capitol Hill and to the state and local officials in Louisiana and Mississippi who support restoring a level playing field for Gulf shrimp processors, docks, and harvesters. We look forward to consulting with our leaders on next steps," he added.

"We will be reviewing the details of the Commission's decision to determine what further steps may be merited," said Elizabeth Drake, partner at Stewart and Stewart, who provided the legal leadership on the case. "We at Stewart and Stewart are privileged to have the opportunity to advocate for fair trade for this vital industry. We will work with COGSI to explore all options, including judicial review, policy changes, and other steps that may be needed to ensure that massive government subsidies are not allowed to fuel foreign exports, suppress U.S. prices, and endanger our domestic industries, including the U.S. shrimp industry," she added.

About the Coalition of Gulf Shrimp Industries: The Coalition of Gulf Shrimp Industries was formed to support these petitions and to work for the long-term survival of the entire Gulf shrimp industry. The domestic producers supporting the petitions account for the vast majority of domestic U.S. production, and they represent the industry across the coastal states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina and Texas. For a fact sheet with more information on the cases, go to www.gulfshrimpcoalition.com

CONTACT: Media Contacts: David Veal, Executive Director director@gulfshrimpcoalition.com (228) 806-9600 Edward Hayes, Legal Counsel ehayes@leakeandersson.com (504) 717-9787Source:Coalition of Gulf Shrimp Industries