Wicker, Cochran Say Coast Shrimpers Still Need Antidumping Duties Imposed on Foreign Imports

Miss. Senators Ask Trade Commission to Continue Antidumping Measures to Prevent Unfair Trade of Frozen Warmwater Shrimp Imports

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Thad Cochran, R-Miss., today asked the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) to continue existing antidumping duties that have helped the shrimp industry on the Gulf Coast compete fairly with foreign imports.

The Mississippi lawmakers issued the letter as the ITC works to determine if conditions within the U.S. shrimp industry, as well as subsidies provided by foreign governments, warrant the continuation or removal of antidumping duties against frozen warmwater shrimp imports from Brazil, China, India, Thailand and Vietnam.

In their letter to the ITC, Cochran and Wicker said the duties, first imposed in 2005, have helped level the playing field for shrimp harvesters and producers in Mississippi and other shrimp-producing states.

“The antidumping duty orders currently in place have been successful in providing the domestic shrimp industry an opportunity to compete on a level playing field.  Preservation of these important trade remedies is necessary to ensure the long-term viability of the U.S. industry, as we feel confident that injury to American shrimp harvesters and processors will swiftly resume should the orders be revoked,” Cochran and Wicker wrote.

“We appreciate the role the Commission has played in preventing the unfair dumping of foreign shrimp products into our country.  As the Commission nears conclusion of its second sunset review of this case, we respectfully request that you vote to maintain the antidumping duty measures currently in place for frozen warmwater shrimp,” they said.

Commercial shrimp harvesting and processing production in Mississippi totaled about more than 40 million pounds in 2015, valued at $111.5 million.  The industry in Mississippi had an estimated $122.5 million direct and indirect economic impact on the state in 2015.

The antidumping duties have benefited the Gulf Coast shrimp industry, which has been negatively affected by natural disasters like hurricanes and flooding, the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, and economic downturns.

The ITC is expected to make its decision to continue the antidumping duties in late May.  Follow the case here: