WASHINGTON — The U.S. Justice Department has turned to the appeals process to overturn a ruling that has stymied the government’s review of petitions that seek to limit Chinese imports, arguing that they threaten to disrupt domestic markets.
The Justice Department asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit on Monday night to stay a preliminary injunction barring it from accepting or reviewing the safeguard petitions, pending a formal appeal. The U.S. Court of International Trade in New York issued the injunction.
The government also asked the Court of Appeals in Washington for an expedited schedule regarding an appeal it said it would file by Monday. Justice Department lawyers asked that the U.S. Association of Importers of Apparel & Textiles, which brought the original lawsuit at the Court of International Trade, be instructed to respond to the appeal by Feb. 28.
It is the second time the Justice Department has asked a court to stay the preliminary injunction that bars it from accepting or reviewing safeguard petitions that seek to impose fresh quotas on Chinese apparel and textile imports. A trade court judge turned down the government’s request to delay the injunction on Jan. 31.
The legal maneuvering stems from a case filed by U.S. importers that challenges the government’s authority to impose limits on Chinese textile and apparel imports based solely on threat rather than actual market disruption.
China agreed to a safeguard mechanism, or temporary quotas, when it joined the World Trade Organization in December 2001. The provision allows importing nations to impose one-year quotas on Chinese apparel and textile imports that are threatening to cause, or are causing, market disruption.
A coalition of U.S. domestic textile, fiber and apparel groups and the union UNITE HERE filed 12 safeguard petitions, beginning in October, in an effort to curb the flow of Chinese imports. The injunction has forced the coalition to consider whether it will have to file new petitions based on actual market disruption, depending on how long the court case and appeal drag on.
In its motion to lift the injunction, the government argued: “A stay is necessary to remove any impediment to our ability to exercise rights pursuant to China’s Accession Agreement to the World Trade Organization.”Justice Department lawyers also argued a stay would help the U.S. protect domestic textile producers “from the irreparable harm they could suffer as a result of the preliminary injunction’s bar against even considering whether to invoke the safeguard provision, pursuant to existing procedures, until imports of textiles from China have caused actual market disruption.”
The government also contended that the injunction, which bars “self-initiation” of the safeguards, exceeds the relief requested by importers. Lawyers also said the U.S. will suffer irreparable harm if the court denies the stay of the injunction because it has “impeded communications and created uncertainty” between the U.S. and China.
“By delaying even mere analysis, the injunction could result in higher safeguard limits, thereby diminishing the effectiveness of any quantitative restraints imposed pursuant to the Accession Agreement,” the brief stated.
Justice Department lawyers also wrote that a stay will not “substantially harm” importers. The government’s brief stated, “The United States cannot cause USA-ITA’s members any harm — whether it be the cancellation of orders, the inability to stock shelves or the inability to find alternative sources of supply for specialized products — by merely thinking about and discussing information in connection with those requests.”
Grant Aldonas, undersecretary of commerce for international trade at the U.S. Commerce Department; Josette Sheeran Shiner, deputy U.S. Trade Representative, and John B. Taylor, undersecretary for international affairs of the Treasury Department, submitted declarations outlining how the injunction has impeded their actions and supporting the government’s motion for a stay.
EXCLUSIVE: @tomford is opening its first-ever beauty store. The boutique, which opens November 20 in London’s Covent Gardens, was designed with the over-the-top glam Ford is known for. Read the full story on WWD.com, link in bio. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: Simon Wagner) #TomFordBeauty
New York-based DJ @harleyvnewton threw a party to celebrate the holiday collection of her dress and pajama line @hvn at the Ladurée Beverly Hills. It Girls @katebosworth, @rashidajones and more joined in on the fun, which included cocktails, croque monsieur sandwiches and a photo booth. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA.com)
For the holidays, @Burberry partnered with 20-year-old artist @blondeymccoy on a series of three outdoor murals in downtown Manhattan. The murals are McCoy’s interpretation of a Christmas eve party, the idea of charity and the spirit of family. His third mural, pictured here, is the most personal. The image depicts McCoy’s grandparents and father in London’s Trafalgar Square in the Seventies. “My work often features lots of sentimental objects.” #wwdeye
For spring 2018, designers applied bold colors and cartoonish motifs on everything from sneakers and belts to key chains. See all the top men’s accessories trends on WWD.com. #wwdtrends (📷: George Chinsee; Prop Styling by @rnasti; Market Editor: @luiscampuzano)
The @dior-sponsored @guggenheim international gala pre-party has a history of drawing cool-girl musical acts to serenade the crowd –– and last night was no exception. @haimtheband performed songs both new and old, and lured a star-studded audience with the likes of Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Mamoudou Athie and more. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
In a partnership between the @metopera and the @englishnationalopera, “Marnie” was born. The opera, with costumes sponsored by @mrporterlive, is an adaptation of the 1961 thriller by Winston Graham. Arianne Phillips, who created the costumes, is no rookie: She’s styled Madonna for her tours and created costumes for a myriad of films in the past. Read WWD’s interview with Phillips, where she talks about her inspiration for the opera’s costumes on WWD.com #wwdfashion
@barneysnyc took a different approach to their holiday windows this year. Instead of Christmas decor, Barneys tapped @thehaasbrothers to tell a story of positivity, gratitude and inclusivity via heartwarming silliness and humor. “It’s about kids and it’s about coming together and being family and loving each other,” said Simon Haas. #wwdfashion (📷: @joshuascottphoto)
Beauty influencer @kandeejohnson makes her foray into hair care with a collaboration with @ogx_beauty — making it the first time that OGX has teamed up for a product creation. The collab includes shampoos and conditioners in three scents. At 39 and a mom, Johnson is a different profile than the emerging social media stars, but is considered one of the pioneers of the digital beauty influencer world. Read WWD’s interview with her on wwd.com, including the strangest beauty product she’s ever tried #wwdbeauty