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An executive order issued by President Trump June 14 instructs federal agency heads to evaluate the need for each of their current advisory committees established under the Federal Advisory Committee Act and to terminate at least one-third of non-statutorily required advisory committees by Sept. 30.
USTR has released its schedule of public hearings in connection with a proposal to impose additional tariffs of up to 25 percent on some $300 billion worth of imports from China not already subject to higher tariffs under the Section 301 process.
USTR anticipates that any modifications to the list of GSP-eligible articles resulting from this review will be effective as of Nov. 1.
Several members of Congress are pushing the Trump administration to automatically renew exclusions from the 25 percent additional tariff imposed on $50 billion worth of imports from China. Those exclusions, which are being announced in stages, are currently effective for one year after they are published.
Some products could be removed from duty-free treatment under the Generalized System of Preferences while others could retain or be reinstated to GSP eligibility under possible changes under consideration by the International Trade Commission. Comments on these changes are due to the ITC by July 8.
New antidumping and countervailing duty orders on quartz surface products from China are expected to become effective soon after the International Trade Commission announced June 11 its final affirmative AD and CV injury determinations. Importers of these products will be liable for AD duties of 265.81 to 333.69 percent and CV duties of 45.32 to 190.99 percent.
A new federal strategy aimed at ensuring secure and reliable supplies of critical minerals includes a recommendation that the U.S. examine how imports of these minerals are affecting national security, raising the prospect that import restrictions could be imposed at some point.
President Trump has announced that the five percent tariff scheduled to be imposed June 10 on all imports from Mexico has been “indefinitely suspended” in light of a bilateral agreement to work toward a “durable solution” on “irregular migration” from Mexico to the U.S. The two sides said they would “continue their discussions on the terms of additional understandings,” which will be “completed and announced within 90 days, if necessary.”
The U.S. trade deficit in goods and services fell 2.1 percent in April, according to trade statistics released June 6 by the Department of Commerce. The monthly deficit of $50.8 billion reflected a 2.2 percent decrease in exports to $206.8 billion and a 2.2 percent decrease in imports to $257.60 billion.
Importers and exporters of plywood from China that has both outer veneers made of a softwood species of wood will have to certify that these products do not meet certain criteria to avoid liability for substantial and retroactive duties under the existing antidumping and countervailing duty orders on hardwood plywood products from China. This requirement is being imposed in conjunction with the expansion of the scope of these orders following a determination that imports of certain plywood products are circumventing the orders.
Importers should be prepared for President Trump’s recently announced tariffs on imports from Mexico to go to ten percent and possibly higher, says Nicole Bivens Collinson, president of international trade and government relations for trade and customs law firm Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg. In the meantime potential responses are under consideration, from retaliatory tariffs on U.S. exports to legal and legislative action to curtail the president’s trade powers, as affected parties await more details.
Dozens more goods have been excluded from the additional 25 percent duty imposed on some $34 billion worth of imports from China (List 1 goods). These exclusions cover one HTSUS subheading and 88 specially prepared product descriptions and reflect about 464 separate exclusion requests.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative announced May 31 that its intent to extend the deadline by which List 3 goods from China must enter the U.S. to remain subject to a Section 301 additional tariff of 10 percent rather than being subject to a higher tariff of 25 percent. Originally, such goods exported before May 10 had to be entered by June 1 or be subject to the higher tariff rate, but USTR has now extended that entry date to June 15.
China has announced that beginning June 3 it will accept in stages requests for exclusions from the retaliatory tariffs it has imposed against more than $100 billion worth of goods imported from the U.S. Requests must contain specific information, and exclusions will only be granted to Chinese companies and for one year.
CBP recently reported that fiscal year 2018 saw increases in both the number of audits completed (from 418 to 435) and total revenue collected as a result of importer audits (from $41.3 million to $42.2 million). The total number of trade penalties issued rose as well, from 931 to 1,385.
Currency manipulation by foreign countries could be deemed an export subsidy and subject to countervailing duties under a new proposed rule from the International Trade Administration. Comments on this proposal are due by June 27.
China trade issues were the primary topic of conversation at a May 23 meeting in Paris of trade ministers from the U.S., the European Union, and Japan, according to a joint statement issued after the meeting. Other topics included World Trade Organization reform, export finance, and e-commerce. The dialogue was the latest to be held as part of a trilateral initiative launched in December 2017 to enhance cooperation on trade issues.
This rule revises ECCNs 3A001, 5A002, 6A001, and 9A004 and adds ECCN 3D0005 to add to the CCL certain recently developed or developing technologies essential to U.S. national security.
Stating that correct classification is a vital step toward achieving a successful miscellaneous tariff bill filing, the International Trade Commission is recommending that prospective petitioners research the HTSUS classification of their goods and consider requesting a binding ruling from U.S. Customs and Border Protection before submitting MTB requests this fall.
The Bureau of Industry and Security has announced a temporary general license authorizing specific, limited engagement in transactions involving the export, reexport, and transfer of items subject to the Export Administration Regulations to Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. and 68 of its non-U.S. affiliates. This license will be effective May 20 through Aug. 19 and BIS will evaluate whether an extension beyond this period is needed.
Requests for exclusions from the 25 percent additional tariff imposed May 10 on $200 billion worth of goods (List 3 goods) imported from China will require much more information than has been required for List 1 and List 2 goods, according to a notice from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. Importers of List 3 goods interested in requesting exclusions should act now to start assembling this information, as the request process could get underway soon.