26.03.2021

JLG and Genie file anti-dumping petition

JLG and Genie have joined together under the banner of the Coalition of American Manufacturers of Mobile Access Equipment, to petition the US government to investigate their concerns that some, or all, Chinese manufacturers are selling aerial work platforms in the USA at less than fair value supported, or made possible, by subsidies from the Chinese government.

The petition, filed with the International Trade Commission, was submitted on February 26th. In this preliminary phase, the commission has 45 days to determine whether there is a reasonable indication that the US industry has been ‘materially injured’, or is threatened with ‘material injury’. If it feels there may be a case to answer, it must notify the Department of Commerce by April 19th, which will then kick off a full investigation with calls for evidence and industry comment.

The published summary is as follows:

“The Commission hereby gives notice of the institution of investigations and commencement of preliminary phase antidumping and countervailing duty investigation Nos. 701–TA–665 and 731–TA–1557 (Preliminary) pursuant to the Tariff Act of 1930 (‘‘the Act’’) to determine whether there is a reasonable indication that an industry in the United States is materially injured or threatened with material injury, or the establishment of an industry in the United States is materially retarded, by reason of imports of certain mobile access equipment and subassemblies there of (‘‘mobile access equipment’’) from China, provided for in statistical reporting numbers 8427.10.8020, 8427.10.8030, 8427.10.8070, 8427.10.8095, 8427.20.8020, 8427.20.8090, and 8431.20.0000 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States, that are alleged to be sold in the United States at less than fair value and alleged to be subsidized by the Government of China.

Unless the Department of Commerce extends the time for initiation, the Commission must reach a preliminary determination in antidumping and countervailing duty investigations in 45 days, or in this case by April 12, 2021.”

For those looking for more information the contact given is:

Alejandro Orozco
Office of Investigations,
U.S. International Trade Commission,
500 E Street SW,
Washington, DC 20436.
(202) 205–3177,

The public record for the investigations may also be viewed on the Commission’s electronic docket at: edis.usitc.gov

The categories listed are tough to make sense of and tend to combine electric forklifts with aerial work platforms. They are as follows:
8427.10.8020 ‘Self-propelled electric imports. monthly imports halved between Aug 2019 and July 2020 – the last month for which data was provided - from $30 to $15 million. In July 2020 imports from China were $3.1 million – so roughly 20 percent of imports in this section.

8427.10.8030 ‘Fork Lift and other works trucks fitted with lifting or handling equipment – operator riding electric self-propelled’ around $6 million a month of which China made up under $900,000 in July.

8427.10.8070 ‘self-propelled electric aerial work platform’ This category was around $12.5 million a month with China not listed – it seems this is a highly fragmented market India was the only named importing country

8427.10.8095 Fork Lift and Other works trucks fitted with lifting or handling equipment – Other. China imports in this sector were $4.6 million in July

8427.20.8020 Self-propelled trucks other than rider type – Others this is a large section at $60- 80 million

8427.20.8020 Other Self-propelled trucks other than rider type AWP This category is $10 to $15 million a month - China not listed - Canada makes up almost half the total and exports generally substantially exceed imports.

8431.20.0000 parts for fork lift and works trucks fitted with lifting or handling equipment China is listed as the largest source for parts with Pennsylvania as the largest destination.

We asked both JLG and Genie/Terex if they wished to add a comment and so far have received the following from JLG:

“In order to protect the principles of fair trade and the health of the access equipment industry and its workforce, the Coalition of American Manufacturers of Mobile Access Equipment has filed a petition with the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. International Trade Commission to counteract unreasonable pricing by Chinese access equipment manufacturers. As a member of the Coalition, JLG Industries is focused on advancing the mission of providing safe and reliable access equipment at competitive prices to our many customers serving communities around the world, and we are confident this action is in the best interests of our company as well as our customers, suppliers and the industry as a whole. We remain steadfast in our commitments to ethical business practices and operating with integrity, while manufacturing quality products and maintaining strong partnerships globally. We look forward to continuing to strengthen our relationships with our partners and their customers.”

While Genie said: "At this time, we have no comment."

Vertikal Comment

This case is quite different from the crane petition initiated last year by Manitowoc. An increasing volume of aerial work platforms are indeed imported from China, and as with any new entrant into a market, they will almost certainly carry attractive ‘introductory’ prices.

However, the majority of Chinese imports are sold, and even built, by North American manufacturers or brands, including JLG, Genie, MEC, GMG, and now Skyjack. Chinese companies directly active in the market include Dingli, LGMG and Sinoboom. They are most prolific in the low margin smaller slab electric scissor lift market. The vast majority of units in the rapidly growing micro scissor lift market are built in China, either by American, French or Chinese manufacturers, many of which are sold under badging deals.

At first glance the publicly accessible evidence suggests that the case is weak, in part due to the available data being mixed up with fork trucks. Unlike the crane petition, this one may well find US industry acceptance, due to the ‘trade war’ between the two countries and the heightened political climate. Chinese manufacturers are certainly a threat to the well established manufacturers, but that is not always a negative factor for consumers – rental companies and end users. And as to government subsidies this can be a hard one to point the finger at. Most countries – the US included – offer incentives and grants, either directly or through tax incentives, and if not now, then in the past.

Above all else one hopes that should an investigation go ahead it will be impartial, factual and without political interference. If examples of unfair trade practices are found, penalties should be applied to the guilty parties, rather than via a blanket penalty or tariff, which could so easily have unintended consequences, including a negative impact on those bringing the petition in terms of more expensive machines – and worst still parts and components.

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