The U.S. Commerce Department says it is investigating subsidies in eight nations for frozen warmwater shrimp.
Gulf of Mexico shrimpers had asked for the investigation of subsidized imports from China, Ecuador, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.
David Veal, executive director of the Coalition of Shrimp Industries, tells The Times-Picayune that it's likely to be nine months before any decision on whether to impose duties to offset those subsidies.
The coalition formally asked for the investigations on Dec. 28.
Commerce officials say an initial assessment found reason to investigate 117 of 133 subsidy programs alleged by the coalition.
They cover frozen warm-water shrimp and prawns packed with marinade, spices or sauce.
Investigators won't look at programs for fresh, breaded, cold-water, or other types of shrimp.