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U.S. slaps anti-dumping duties on Chinese pipe fittings

WASHINGTON, Feb 14 (Reuters) - China is hurting U.S. manufacturers of cast iron soil pipe fittings by "dumping" its products on the American market, the Commerce Department said on Wednesday in announcing it will collect cash deposits from importers of the fittings.

The department said it preliminarily found that Chinese exporters have sold the fittings in the United States at 68.37 percent to 109.95 percent less than fair value and that in 2016 imports of the fittings from China were valued at an estimated $8.6 million. It will issue a final determination on June 27.

The highest "dumping rate" came from Sibo International Limited, according to the Commerce Department, which has put a duty on the company's fittings of 109.79 percent.

President Donald Trump's administration has made protecting U.S. manufacturers a priority and since Trump took office has initiated 94 investigations into unfair subsidies and dumping, where a company exports products at artificially low prices. (Reporting by Lisa Lambert; Editing by Tom Brown)