November 17, 2009
News Release 09-096
Inv. Nos. 701-TA-459 and 731-TA-1155 (Final)
Contact: Peg O'Laughlin, 202-205-1819


The United States International Trade Commission (USITC or Commission) today determined that a U.S. industry is materially injured by reason of imports of commodity matchbooks from India that the U.S. Department of Commerce has determined are subsidized and sold in the United States at less than fair value.

All six Commissioners voted in the affirmative.

As a result of the Commission's affirmative determinations, the Department of Commerce will issue countervailing and antidumping duty orders on imports of these products from India.

The Commission's public report Commodity Matchbooks from India (Investigation Nos. 701- TA-459 and 731-TA-1155 (Final), USITC Publication 4117, November 2009) will contain the views of the Commission and information developed during the investigations.

Copies may be obtained after December 21, 2009, by emailing, calling 202-205-2000, or by writing the Office of the Secretary, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20436. Requests may also be made by fax to 202-205-2104.

Office of Industries
Washington, DC 20436


Commodity Matchbooks from India
Investigations Nos. 701-TA-459 and 731-TA-1155 (Final)

Product Description: The products covered by these investigations are commodity matchbooks consisting of paper match stems fastened into a matchbook cover. The cover is usually made of plain white paperboard, which is sometimes printed with a simple generic message or image (i.e., "thank you" or an American Flag) or with a chain store logo. Each matchbook typically consists of twenty matches, mirroring the quantity of cigarettes contained in a pack. A slurry containing red phosphorus, polyvinyl acetate, and ground glass is applied to the cover to use as a striker surface for the match head. The match stem is made from paperboard and is tipped with a match head composed of a chemical formula (like potassium chlorate, ground glass, gelatin, sulfur, diatomaceous earth, and carboxymethylcellulose), which ignites when struck against the striker surface.

The flame is produced by a chemical reaction between potassium chlorate and red phosphorus. Safety matches separate the principle chemicals by adding the potassium chlorate into the formulation of the match head and the red phosphorous into the formulation of the striker surface. All matchbooks and most wooden matches are safety matches. All commodity matchbooks, whether imported or made in the United States, must meet U.S. Consumer Product Safety Standards (16 C.F.R.  1202.1 et seq.).

Commodity matchbooks are currently classifiable under subheading 3605.00.00 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), entering duty free at the general rate of duty.

Status of Proceedings:
1.  Type of investigations:  Final countervailing duty and final antidumping.
2.  Petitioners:  D.D. Bean & Sons Co., Jaffery, NH.
3.  Investigations instituted by USITC:  June 2, 2009.
4.  Hearing:  October 20, 2009.
5.  USITC vote:  November 17, 2009.
6.  USITC notification of Department of Commerce:  November 30, 2009.

U.S. Industry:
1.  Number of U.S. firms in 2008:  2.
2.  Production during 2008:  (1).
3.  Employment of production and related workers in 2008:  (1).
4.  U.S. commercial shipments 2008:  (1).
5.  U.S. apparent consumption during 2008:  (1).

U.S. Imports:
1.  Imports from all countries during 2008:  (1).
2.  Imports from subject country during 2008:  (1).
3.  Ratio of quantity of all imports to U.S. apparent consumption during 2008:  (1).     
4.  Ratio of quantity of imports from subject countries to U.S. apparent consumption during 2008:  (1).

(1) Withheld to avoid disclosure of business proprietary information.

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