Utilities Lack Standing in Russian Uranium Case

     (CN) – A group of U.S. utility companies lacks standing to challenge the Department of Commerce’s decision to suspend – rather than terminate – its antidumping duty investigation of uranium from Russia, the Court of International Trade ruled.

     The case stems from the Department of Commerce’s decision in 1991 to investigate uranium imports from the U.S.S.R. When the U.S.S.R. dissolved, the agency continued its investigation and made a preliminary determination that uranium imports from the newly independent states of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan were being dumped, or sold in the United States below fair-market value.
     Russian and U.S. representatives responded with a series of negotiations, which led to agreements on the origin, amount and means for importing low-enriched uranium from Russia into the United States.
     The Russian and U.S. governments also struck a deal over highly enriched uranium extracted from nuclear weapons.
     Based on these agreements, the Department of Commerce suspended – but specifically did not terminate – its antidumping duty investigation.
     This decision was challenged by several U.S. utility companies that imported low-enriched uranium through the United States Executive Agent, the only U.S. entity authorized to buy enriched uranium from Russia.
     However, the Court of International Trade dismissed their action on the grounds that the so-called “Ad Hoc Utilities Group” lacked standing to sue.
     “Because the utility companies individually do not each qualify either as producers or importers of the subject uranium,” Judge Pogue wrote, “and because the companies as a group do not qualify as a trade or business association a majority of the members of which are producers or importers, the court concludes that the group lacks standing.”

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