For more information on how these developments may affect your business, please contact Nicole Bivens Collinson at (202) 730-4956 or via email.


The U.S. and China held the third meeting of their Economic Working Group Feb. 5-6 in Beijing. Topics of discussion included China’s industrial policy practices and overcapacity and the resulting impact on U.S. workers and firms. According to the State Department, U.S. officials “reaffirmed that the U.S. is not seeking to decouple the two economies and instead seek a healthy economic relationship that provides a level playing field for American companies and workers.” The next meeting of the working group is planned for April.

Critical Minerals

The U.S. hosted Feb. 8 the inaugural meeting of the C5+1 Critical Minerals Dialogue, which seeks to increase Central Asia’s involvement in global critical minerals supply chains, strengthen economic cooperation, and advance the clean energy transition while protecting the region’s ecosystems. The State Department reports that during this meeting senior officials from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan “shared their interest in developing investment opportunities in critical minerals that meet the highest environmental, social, and governance standards.”

Separately, during a Feb. 8 meeting, U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai and Norway’s foreign minister Espen Barth Eide discussed the nexus between climate and trade as well as Norway’s role in critical mineral supply chains.


The first round of dialogues under the U.S.-Japan Task Force on the Promotion of Human Rights and International Labor Standards in Supply Chains was held earlier this month. This task force is a mechanism for the two partners to protect and promote human rights and internationally-recognized labor rights, including by prohibiting the use of forced labor in supply chains through trade policy.

According to USTR, the government dialogue included an exchange of information on relevant laws, policies, and guidance, including implementation of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, the Xinjiang supply chain business advisory, the rapid response mechanism in the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, and the Department of Labor’s list of goods produced by child or forced labor. The stakeholder dialogue featured discussions and information sharing on corporate due diligence best practices.


USTR reports that during a Jan. 29-31 round of negotiations on the U.S.-Kenya Strategic Trade and Investment Partnership, the two sides exchanged views on the most recent proposed texts regarding agriculture, good regulatory practices, and workers’ rights. They also discussed textual issues in the chapters on anti-corruption; micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises; and services domestic regulation.

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