Court backs stripping Chinese tire import duties

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An appeals court has ruled that Chinese-made goods shouldn't be subject to certain kinds of import duties imposed by the U.S. Commerce Department.

The U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington upheld a ruling Monday that the duties, called "countervailing" duties, can't be applied to Chinese-made goods because it doesn't have a market economy. Chinese goods are still subject to anti-dumping duties.

Chinese tire makers GRX International Tire Corp., Hebei Starbright Tire Co. and Tianjin United Tire & Rubber International had challenged the imposition of countervailing duties.

Countervailing duties are intended to tax items whose sale price when exported is subsidized by a company's home government.

The Commerce Department sought to impose the duties in 2007. The court ruled that congressional moves in 1988 and 1994 barred them.

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