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U.S. Customs and Border Protection is looking to expand participation in its ongoing tests of the feasibility and functionality of filing air, rail, and vessel cargo export manifest data electronically through the Automated Commercial Environment. This effort comes as CBP continues to work to reconcile its interest in obtaining advance information for export manifest requirements with the export data requirements in the Census Bureau’s Foreign Trade Regulations.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is considering a number of options for further action to ensure the collection of antidumping and countervailing duties on imported goods. Earlier this year President Trump issued an executive order directing federal authorities to step up AD/CV duty collections, which an August 2016 Government Accountability Report said had fallen $2.3 billion short over the previous 15 years.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is moving ahead with an evaluation of the implications and potential application of blockchain technology to trade processing. As part of that effort, CBP’s Commercial Customs Operations Advisory Committee has established a working group to examine this issue.
The ITC has announced its recommendations for import restrictions on large residential washers following its determination in a section 201 global safeguard investigation that increased imports of such products are seriously injuring the domestic industry. These recommendations will be forwarded by Dec. 4 to President Trump, who faces a Feb. 4 deadline for making a final decision on which, if any, to implement.
The Justice Department announced Nov. 20 that the head of a non-governmental organization based in Hong Kong and Virginia and the former foreign minister of Senegal have been charged with participating in a multi-year, multimillion dollar scheme to bribe high-level officials in Chad and Uganda in exchange for business advantages for a Chinese oil and gas company, in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
USTR has updated the U.S. objectives for the renegotiation of the NAFTA that were originally announced July 17. According to a USTR press release, the updated objectives reflect the goals of text proposals tabled by the U.S. in the ongoing talks.
Trade liberalization continues to backslide, the report states, as Chinese government policy contributes to rising protectionism and unfair regulatory restrictions that have left more than three-quarters of U.S. firms responding to a recent survey feeling less welcome in China than they did a year earlier. However, the report also sees opportunities for U.S. companies in the Chinese market.
Members of the House and Senate registered their opposition to several Trump administration proposals to revamp NAFTA this week as the fifth round of negotiations to update the agreement got underway in Mexico City. Expectations for the round were dampened when the three trade ministers announced they would not attend.
With nearly all core trade processing capabilities having now been transferred to ACE, an Aug. 2 outage that lasted nearly an entire day has raised renewed concerns about trade facilitation and enforcement in the event of a similar occurrence in the future.
During his nearly two-week trip to Asia President Trump discussed bilateral trade relations with the leaders of Vietnam, China, Philippines and other countries but came away with no specific deliverables. At the same time, the 11 remaining members of the Trans-Pacific Partnership advanced their effort to modify and implement that agreement.
A recent World Trade Organization report finds that the imposition of new trade restrictions by G-20 economies has continued to slow this year while new measures to facilitate trade have remained steady.
A number of changes in U.S. policy toward Cuba announced by President Trump this past June are being implemented as of Nov. 9 under regulatory changes being made by the Bureau of Industry and Security, the Office of Foreign Assets Control, and the State Department.