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CBP Instructions on FTA Origination Certification in Absence of Tariff Change Rule

Friday, May 12, 2017
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

According to a May 10 administrative message from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, a very limited number of tariff items in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the U.S. do not have corresponding free trade agreement tariff change rules because they were negotiated using a Harmonized Tariff Schedule that was subsequently modified in 2007, 2012, or 2017 and the corresponding TCRs have not been implemented.

CBP states that until revised TCRs are implemented, importers, exporters, and manufacturers of affected goods seeking to perform a tariff-shift origination analysis should classify the good and its materials using the most recent HTSUS in which the tariff item has a corresponding TCR and perform the origination analysis using that year’s HTSUS. Ideally, the certificate of origin should indicate both the current HTSUS number and the previously corresponding HTSUS number used to perform the origination analysis in parentheses and with wording to that effect.

CBP states that certificates of origin following these instructions will remain valid even after the corresponding TCRs have been updated.

The attached table shows the up-to-date/out-of-date status of the TCRs for each FTA.

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