Print PDF

Digital Trade, EU Trade Barriers for SMEs to be Subject of ITC Hearing

Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The International Trade Commission will hold a public hearing Sept. 25 at the NASA Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, Calif., in conjunction with two ongoing investigations into the role of digital trade in the U.S. and global economies and trade barriers that U.S. small and medium-sized enterprises face in the European Union.

Requests to appear at this  hearing are due no later than Sept. 12 and pre-hearing briefs and statements should be filed by Sept. 18. Post-hearing briefs and statements are due no later than Oct. 3, and all other written submissions must be filed by Oct. 15 (SMEs) or March 21 (digital trade).

Digital Trade. For the purposes of this investigation, digital trade encompasses commerce in products and services delivered via the Internet as well as commerce in products and services that is facilitated by the use of the Internet and Internet-based technologies.

The ITC recently completed the first of two investigations on digital trade, which described U.S. digital trade in the context of the broader economy, examined cross-border digital trade and its relationship to other cross-border transactions (e.g., foreign direct investment), described notable barriers and impediments to digital trade, and outlined potential approaches for assessing the linkages and contributions of digital trade to the U.S. economy.

The second investigation, which will be the subject of the Sept. 25 hearing, builds on the first to estimate the value of U.S. digital trade and the potential growth of this trade, examine the broader linkages and contributions of digital trade to the U.S. economy, present case studies that examine the importance of digital trade to selected U.S. industries that use or produce such goods and services, and examine the effect of notable barriers to digital trade on selected industries and the broader U.S. economy. The ITC is also examining how other industries, such as financial services and retailing, make use of digital products and services for production and trade. The ITC anticipates submitting its report in this investigation by July 14, 2014.

EU Trade Barriers for SMEs. To help inform the recently launched Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership negotiations, the ITC is conducting an investigation of the trade barriers that U.S. SMEs perceive as disproportionately affecting their exports to the EU compared to those of larger exporters. The ITC’s report in this investigation will identify barriers faced by SMEs exporting both goods and services and will focus on sectors with high concentrations of SMEs. The ITC will also address specific trade barriers in individual EU member states and provide qualitative distinctions among the identified barriers.

The ITC is already scheduled to hold a public hearing in this investigation Oct. 8 in Washington, D.C. The ITC expects to submit its report to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative no later than Jan. 31, 2014.

To get news like this in your inbox daily, subscribe to the Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report.

Customs & International Headlines