Background

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative and the Department of Commerce are proposing to modify the current slate of industry trade advisory committees as part of the process of rechartering the ITACs for a new four-year term starting in February. Comments on the proposed changes are due no later than Dec. 30.

ITACs provide detailed policy and technical advice, information, and recommendations on trade policy matters including (1) negotiating objectives and bargaining positions before entering into trade agreements, (2) the impact of the implementation of trade agreements, (3) matters concerning the operation of any trade agreement once entered into, and (4) other matters arising in connection with the development, implementation, and administration of U.S. trade policy. They address market-access problems, trade barriers, tariffs, discriminatory foreign procurement practices, and the information, marketing, and advocacy needs of their industry sector.

USTR and DOC are proposing to modify the ITACs as follows.

- dividing the current ITAC on Forest Products, Building Materials, Construction, and Nonferrous Metals into two separate committees with amended names: ITAC on Critical Minerals and Nonferrous Metals (ITAC 5) and ITAC on Forest Products and Building Materials (new ITAC 8)

- changing the name of the ITAC on Small and Minority Business (ITAC 8) to the ITAC on Small, Minority, and Woman-led Business to more accurately reflect the full scope of its work

- establishing a committee of chairs of the ITACs to facilitate cross-sharing of information and provide a powerful tool to gather timely cross-cutting input across sectors

These changes would result in 12 sectoral ITACs and three functional ITACs, as follows.

- (ITAC 1) Aerospace Equipment

- (ITAC 2) Automotive Equipment and Capital Goods

- (ITAC 3) Chemicals, Pharmaceuticals, Health/Science Products and Services

- (ITAC 4) Consumer Goods

- (ITAC 5) Critical Minerals and Nonferrous Metals

- (ITAC 6) Digital Economy

- (ITAC 7) Energy and Energy Services

- (ITAC 8) Forest Products and Building Materials

- (ITAC 9) Small, Minority, and Woman-led Business

- (ITAC 10) Services

- (ITAC 11) Steel

- (ITAC 12) Textiles and Clothing

- (ITAC 13) Customs Matters and Trade Facilitation

- (ITAC 14) Intellectual Property Rights

- (ITAC 15) Standards and Technical Trade Barriers

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