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The Obama administration announced Dec. 17 a number of measures designed to “chart a new course in [U.S.] relations with Cuba and to further engage and empower the Cuban people.” While the changes include some easing of restrictions on trade, the general U.S. embargo against Cuba remains in place and would require congressional action to be lifted.
Federal lawmakers acted this month to ensure that data on export control license applications remains exempt from disclosure under the Freedom Of Information Act.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative declined this week to take further action against India under the Special 301 intellectual property rights enforcement process, a decision that drew disapproval from the incoming chairman of the Senate Finance Committee.
According to press reports, China refused a request from Korea and Taiwan to extend ITA coverage to liquid crystal displays used in televisions and computer monitors and then rejected an effort to add alternative products of commercial interest to those countries.
An omnibus appropriations bill that will fund the federal government through Sept. 30, 2015, was approved Dec. 11 by the House of Representatives and was expected to pass the Senate soon thereafter.
U.S. Trade Representative Mike Froman and European Union Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström met in Washington Dec. 8 to review the state of the negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.
A press release from Industry Canada states that under this new law the Canada Border Services Agency will be able to work with businesses and intellectual property rights holders to identify counterfeit goods at the border and will have the power to search for and detain such goods to prevent them from entering the Canadian marketplace.
In what has been called one of the most complicated decisions it has ever handled, the WTO Appellate Body reportedly rejected most of the more than 80 challenges in India’s appeal of a dispute settlement panel ruling concerning U.S. countervailing duties on certain hot-rolled carbon steel flat products from India but upheld others, yielding a decision that U.S. trade officials again described as “mixed.”
President Obama indicated in remarks to The Business Roundtable Dec. 3 that he will make a personal effort to advance trade promotion authority legislation, which supporters say is necessary to ensure that free trade agreements currently under negotiation with Europe and Pacific Rim countries have the best opportunity for congressional approval.
Portal 2.0 will allow for new levels of flexibility and security by streamlining applications to U.S. partnership programs, adding functionality requested by partners and meeting security requirements mandated by the Department of Homeland Security.
This report seeks to paint a clearer picture of the extent of foreign bribery, outlines trends in enforcement of anti-bribery laws, and concludes with a set of preliminary conclusions and suggestions for a more targeted approach to preventing, detecting and punishing this crime.
The Department of Justice issued recently an opinion release reiterating its position that the principle of successor liability under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act does not create liability where none previously existed. The release, which cites a section of the DOJ’s FCPA resource guide, responds to an inquiry by a U.S.-based multinational company preparing to acquire a foreign consumer products business.
Two senior U.S. government officials told a recent conference that both the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Justice are increasingly pursuing individuals as well as companies for violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. They added that strong compliance programs and self-reporting of violations are among the measures that affected entities can take to avoid or mitigate FCPA penalties.
The Government Accountability Office released recently a report identifying opportunities to strengthen coordination and increase efficiencies and effectiveness in federal oversight of consumer product safety. Oversight is currently fragmented and overlapping, the report states, resulting in challenges such as communication difficulties, inefficient use of resources and unclear roles.