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New Legislation: Cargo Scanning, Forced Labor, Origin Labeling, FTAs, AD/CV Duties

Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

Cargo Container Scanning. H.R. 2534 (introduced May 21 by Rep. Hahn, D-Calif.) would amend the Security and Accountability For Every Port Act of 2006 to administer a pilot program for 100 percent scanning of cargo containers at domestic ports.

Forced and Child Labor. H.R. 2385 (introduced May 15 by Rep. Vargas, D-Calif.) would require certain large companies to submit to an independent annual audit to verify that their supply chains are free of child and forced labor.

Country of Origin Labeling. H.R. 2393 (introduced May 18 by Rep. Conaway, R-Texas) would repeal country of origin labeling requirements with respect to beef, pork and chicken (click here for related story).

Trade Agreements. The Trade Transparency Act (S. 1381, introduced May 19 by Sen. Warren, D-Mass.) would require the president to make the text of trade agreements available to the public in order for those agreements to receive expedited consideration from Congress. The bill would make such disclosure a regular part of current and future trade negotiations.

AD/CV Duties. The American Trade Enforcement Effectiveness Act (H.R. 2523, introduced May 21 by Rep. Bost, R-Ill.) would streamline the process for addressing the dumping of foreign products into the U.S. market.

Africa. The African Free Trade Initiative Act (S. 1379, introduced May 19 by Sen. Inhofe, R-Okla.) would require the president to establish a plan to negotiate and enter into free trade agreements in sub-Saharan Africa and would require the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the Millennium Challenge Corporation and the U.S. Agency for International Development to work together on how to implement the goals established in that plan. 

Cuba. The Cuba Digital and Telecommunications Advancement Act (S. 1389, introduced May 19 by Sen. Udall, D-N.M.) would allow U.S. companies to export consumer communications devices and telecom services to Cuba. The bill would also repeal policies that prevent U.S. businesses from investing in Cuba, including provisions that prevent financing, indirect financing and assistance to Cuba from the U.S. and other countries, and repeal provisions that prevent multilateral organizations from investing in Cuba and engaging in important diplomatic efforts.

Export Promotion. The State Trade and Export Promotion Utilization Program for American Small Businesses Act (H.R. 2543, introduced May 21 by Rep. Larsen, D-Wash.) would reauthorize funding for the STEP program, which was created by Congress in 2010 to help small businesses overcome hurdles to exporting. 

Illegal Fishing. The Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing Enforcement Act  (S. 1334, introduced May 13 by Sen. Murkowski and favorably reported out of the Commerce Committee May 20) would increase enforcement capabilities for a number of international agreements that combat IUU fishing.

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