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As of Sept. 16, non-ABI entry summary, duty deferral, e214 (electronic foreign-trade zone application), manufacturer ID creation, and importer security filing will be deployed in ACE and will no longer be supported in the Automated Commercial System.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative has initiated a Section 301 investigation of China’s acts, policies, and practices related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation. While the practices to be examined in this investigation will be specific, any potential relief (e.g., additional tariffs or import restrictions) could be imposed on a broader basis. As a result, any company doing business with China should participate in this investigation to ensure that its interests are protected.
At the conclusion of their first round of talks on modernizing NAFTA, the U.S., Canada, and Mexico committed to “an accelerated and comprehensive negotiation process” but warned that “a great deal of effort and negotiation will be required in the coming months.” The three partners are aiming to conclude negotiations by early 2018, but some observers say that timeframe may not be sufficient to address the substantial changes to the agreement that the U.S. is seeking.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection has announced its first-ever final determination in an antidumping duty evasion investigation under the Enforce and Protect Act and advanced several associated proceedings, all covering steel wire hangers from China. A CBP press release states that these investigations have resulted in CBP preventing the evasion of over $33 million dollars in AD duties annually.
As part of its effort to improve U.S. manufacturers’ and suppliers’ access to domestic and foreign government procurement markets, the Trump administration is seeking public input by Sept. 18 on how that access is affected by the government procurement obligations in U.S. free trade agreements and the World Trade Organization Agreement on Government Procurement.
A Trump administration review of steel has been pushed back but is still underway and could yet lead to broad import restrictions, according to press sources.
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said at the launch of negotiations to revamp NAFTA Aug. 16 that President Trump “is not interested in a mere tweaking of a few provisions and a couple of updated chapters” but instead will seek “major improvements.” Lighthizer said this task will be “very difficult” but expressed hope that the end result will be “freer markets, fairer and balanced trade, and stronger ties between our three countries.”
President Trump has directed the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to determine whether to conduct a Section 301 investigation of any of China's laws, policies, practices, or actions that may be unreasonable or discriminatory and that may be harming U.S. intellectual property rights, innovation, or technology development. Any such investigation could ultimately result in additional tariffs or restrictions on imports from China or other measures.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is revising its ongoing tests evaluating the feasibility and functionality of filing air, rail, and vessel cargo export manifest data electronically through the Automated Commercial Environment.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative has initiated its annual review of the products and countries eligible for duty-free treatment under GSP and is accepting petitions seeking to add, preserve, or remove GSP benefits.
An Aug. 8 report from the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission finds that the U.S. faces challenges in identifying and preventing the entry of goods imported from China that are produced with forced labor despite a 2015 law that enhanced U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s authorities in this area.
The Trump administration is reportedly considering self-initiating a Section 301 investigation of China’s forced technology transfer policies. However, the administration has reportedly postponed further action due to its efforts to secure China’s help in imposing tougher economic sanctions against North Korea.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is expanding its enforcement efforts by targeting importers it suspects may have compliance deficiencies with respect to the Lacey Act declaration requirement and related customs issues.
Press sources characterize the plan as an effort to reclaim momentum on this issue, which played a major role in last year’s presidential election, but point out that it contains few new ideas and in many cases aligns closely with objectives advanced by President Trump.
Press sources indicate that negotiators are planning to meet seven times through the end of the year, approximately every three weeks, with trade ministers taking the lead on the last day of each round.