JAS USA COMPLIANCE

News & Insights from JAS Worldwide Compliance

JAS Forwarding (USA), Inc.

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COMPLIANCE SOLUTIONS

JAS USA Compliance Insights

Compliance Solutions

JAS USA Compliance Insights on the Impact of COVID-19

CBP HOLDS GREEN TRADE FORUM WITH ACTING COMMISSIONER MILLER DELIVERING ADDRESS

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) held its inaugural Green Trade Forum on July 11. Various strategies to incentivize green trade and encourage innovation were discussed. Several commentators mentioned the possibility of utilizing the Harmonized Tariff Schedule to promote green trade by adding tariff breakouts for goods made with environmentally preferred materials such as recycled or organically grown materials. CBP Acting Commissioner Troy A. Miller spoke at the event highlighting such CBP actions as a goal to have 50% of the CBP vehicle fleet consist of electric vehicles by 2030, CBP’s goal to digitize any remaining manual and paper-based processes, and their commitment to work with interagency partners, such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), inter alia, to prevent natural resource crimes such as illegal deforestation and logging and illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing. A recording of the forum will be made available soon on the Green Trade Innovation and Incentives Forum page on the CBP website.

Link to the Green Trade Innovation and Incentives Forum web pageLink to the text of the speech by Acting Commissioner Miller
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Cosmetic Registration Requirement

In a recent letter, the National Customs Brokers and Freight Forwarders Association of America (NCBFAA) asked the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to delay for a year the requirement for cosmetic facility registration under the Modernization of Cosmetics Regulation Act of 2022 (MoCRA). MoCRA requires any establishment that manufacturers or processes cosmetic products that are distributed in the United States to assume various new responsibilities as follows:

  • Adverse event reporting
  • Facility registration
  • Product listing
  • Product safety substantiation
  • FDA Mandatory Recall authority

The present deadline for registration and product listing is December 31, 2023. FDA, however, has not outlined exactly how the registation process will work or what system will be utilized. Therefore, NCBFAA is requesting a year extension to allow the trade more time to prepare.

Link to details of MoCRA
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EU Flag

As the European Union’s Import Control System 2 (ICS2) second release deployment window comes to an end on July 1, requiring all airlines to submit detailed shipment information into a new centralized system known as the “Shared Trader Interface” before goods are loaded onto an aircraft, JAS USA is more than ready. Laurie Arnold, Vice President Compliance of JAS USA, stated:

“We're going to be ready. We know what we're doing. We're not going to have to try to figure out how we're going to transmit this data to the airlines or how the airlines are going to get it and transmit it to the government. We will be ahead of the game.”

Click for more information
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United States and Japan Launch Task Force to Promote Human Rights and International Labor Standards in Supply Chains

United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai and Japan's Minister for Economy, Trade, and Industry Nishimura Yasutoshi signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) to launch a Task Force on the Promotion of Human Rights and International Labor Standards in Supply Chains.

This task force established under the US-Japan Partnership on Trade program provides an opportunity for the US and Japan to work together to promote human rights and recognize international labor rights. The US and Japan will exchange information on relevant laws and policies to facilitate dialogues with business and worker organizations to promote best practices for human rights.

These areas of cooperation are designed to protect workers and enhance predictability and clarity for businesses as they seek to contribute to resilient and sustainable supply chains.

“From their leadership in the development of the Group of 7 Trade Ministers’ Statement on Forced Labor to their first-ever release of human rights due diligence guidelines for responsible supply chains to their commitment to carry out shared principles to combat forced labor.   “The launch of this Task Force is another example of how trade can be a force for good throughout the world.  Developing new tools that bring together the combined expertise of agencies across the Governments of the United States and Japan will help contribute to tackling worker exploitation in global supply chains.” said Ambassador Katherine Tai.

Read Full Article
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USITC Launch Database System

The US International Trade Commission (USITC) recently deployed the Investigations Database System (IDS). This new tool was designed to help users find data related to investigations on unfair imports in a more user-friendly manner.   A major new feature is the ability to conduct quick searches and advanced searches of the centralized investigation database that generate in-depth search results across multiple practice areas, providing new perspectives and value-added insights for users.

Other key functions and information across practice areas include:

  • Ability to access investigation information in all practice areas and see a wealth of information, including investigative staff, hearing witnesses, news releases, and other data
  • A new look for the “ongoing investigations” webpage for factfinding investigations
  • Centralized data across different phases of import injury and Section 337 investigations
  • A new module that lists all orders issued in a Section 337 investigation, the parties impacted, and the unfair act and intellectual property implicated in the order
  • Disposition information for individual respondents in investigations
  • Associated litigation information for specific import injury investigations
  • Links to external resources related to investigations (e.g., Department of Commerce AD/CVD information)
  • Integration with EDIS to share core investigation data across all practice areas

Users are encouraged to visit the USITC website at to explore this new tool.

Read the Press Release
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Advesaries Through Sanctions

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) began detaining merchandise produced or manufactured by Jingde Trading Ltd., Rixin Foods. Ltd., and Zhejiang Sunrise Garment Group Co. Ltd. at all U.S. ports of entry on Dec. 5, 2022. This enforcement action is the result of a CBP investigation indicating that these companies use North Korean labor in their supply chains in violation of the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA).

CAATSA prohibits the entry of goods, wares, and articles mined, produced, or manufactured wholly or in party by North Korean nationals or North Korean citizens anywhere in the world, unless clear and convincing evidence is provided that such goods were not made with convict labor, forced labor, or indentured labor under penal sanctions. Pursuant to CAATSA, CBP will detain merchandise from these entities at all U.S. ports of entry unless there is clear and convincing evidence that forced labor was not present at any stage of the production process. Evidence must be provided within 30 days of notice of detention. If the importer fails to provide clear and convincing evidence within this timeframe, the merchandise may be subject to seizure and forfeiture.

Click below for more information

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Supply Chain Visibility

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will collaborate with 13 partner government agencies to deploy a Global Business Identifier (GBI) pilot program that will test the concept of a single business identifier solution to improve the US Government’s ability to efficiently identify high-risk shipments and facilitate legitimate trade.

Through the GBI Evaluative Proof of Concept (EPoC), volunteers from the trade community will provide CBP with entity identifier codes, used widely in various industries, to allow more comprehensive insight into shipper, seller, and manufacturer data.

Click the link below to read full article.

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Section 301 exclusion extension

The Office of the United States Trade Representative today announced a nine‑month extension of 352 product exclusions in the China Section 301 Investigation that had been scheduled to expire at the end of 2022.  These exclusions were initially reinstated on March 28, 2022 and the extension will help align further consideration of these exclusions with the ongoing comprehensive four-year review. 

Interested persons may submit comments on the tariff headings containing these exclusions through the USTR portal in the four-year review, which closes January 17,2023.  Additional information is set out in the following Federal Register Notice.

Click the link below to read more

Jas Forwarding USA Inc. issued a client advisory on December 16,2022 advising clients of the section 301 tariff exclusion extension.

See attached Client Advisory

Read MoreJAS Client Advisory
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Penalty for Failure

The Department of Justice, and Colorado United States Attorney’s office announced that a U.S company, and its Danish parent company, has paid settlement in the amount of $728,910 for failing to properly classify its imported products and declare their value, thereby failing to pay the full amount of customs duties owed to the United States on imported goods.

Under the Tariff Act of 1930, companies that import products into the United States are required to pay customs duties—typically calculated as a percentage of the value of the goods—on those products.  Importers must classify their imported products according to the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), and they owe different rates of duty depending on which HTSUS category the product properly falls into.  Importers are also required to properly declare the value of any goods they import, including products that have been exported, repaired abroad, and re-imported into the United States.

Click below to read more.

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CBP Acting Commissioner

Members of the 16th term Commercial Customs Operations Advisory Committee, known as COAC, were recognized for their meaningful contributions when they gathered Wednesday for their last public meeting of the year in College Park, Maryland. “The COAC advises U.S. Customs and Border Protection regarding regulations, policies or practices and provides critical feedback from the trade community on how these changes will impact the economy and global supply chain entities,” said CBP Acting Commissioner Troy A. Miller, who co-chaired the proceedings. “We understand that even small changes on our end can have a significant impact on trade. Millions of jobs rely on international trade, and we take both the health of the economy and economic security very seriously.”

Click link below for more information

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ACE is the U.S. electronic Single Window platform

ACE is the U.S. electronic Single Window platform for all trade processing, including all Manifest, Cargo Release, Post-release, Export and Partner Government Agency (PGA) data.  Trade users can access ACE via two channels: The ACE Secure Data Portal (ACE Portal) and electronic data interchange (EDI).  Deciding on which ACE access method is needed depends on the specific trade activity.  

Read More Here
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Contact Us Button

JAS Forwarding USA Inc. has been hard at work processing refund requests for the section 301 exclusion 9903.88.67 issued in March 2022 retroactive back to October 2021.  This exclusion is applicable to items falling within the descriptions of the HTS for each individual HTS.  Eligible items can receive a full refund plus interest of section 301 duties paid on entries from October 12, 2022.  The exclusion is valid through the end of this year.  So far JAS Forwarding USA Inc. has processed refund requests for clients totaling over $10 million dollars!  Do you have any entries that might be eligible?  Contact us today and let’s explore!

Email us at Compliance@jas.com

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(L to R) Leah Ellis, JAS Compliance Operations Manager, & Laurie Arnold, VP Compliance, stand in front of the World Trade Bridge on their trip to Laredo, Texas

Last month, Laurie Arnold, VP Compliance, and Leah Ellis, Compliance Operations Manager, went on a trip to Laredo, TX to visit our LRD branch. They spent part of their week in the Laredo office, discussing compliance topics and JAS policies on statements, training, auditing, and duty payments with branch Customs Broker Gustavo Aldrete and the import team.

On July 12th, Laurie and Leah braved the record-breaking high temperatures to visit the World Trade International bridge that spans Laredo, TX and Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas on the Northern Mexican border. Here they developed a better understanding of the border crossing process and got to watch the cargo trucks as they brought their shipments into and out of the country.

Towards the end of their trip, they celebrated Branch Manager Antonio Pastrana’s birthday and enjoyed some cake with the Laredo team. 

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CBP’s Office of Trade Relations are hosting webinars during the first few weeks of June.

CBP’s Office of Trade Relations are hosting webinars during the first few weeks of June. These webinars will provide an overview of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA), as well as strategies on implementation of the act before it goes into effect on June 21st.

The UFLPA establishes a rebuttable presumption that the importation of any goods, wares, articles, and merchandise mined, produced, or manufactured wholly or in part in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China, or produced by certain entities, is prohibited by Section 307 of the Tariff Act of 1930 and that such goods are not entitled to entry to the United States.

CBP is also urging all importers to do their due diligence and review their supply chains to ensure their goods are not being produced with forced labor before UFLPA is implemented.

  • Wednesday, June 1, 2022, 10:00 –11:00 a.m. EDT
  • Tuesday, June 7, 2022, 1:00 – 2:00p.m. EDT
  • Thursday, June 16, 2022, 2:00 –3:00 p.m. EDT
There are 3 webinars scheduled, follow to register
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The Office of the United States Trade Representative announced its determination to reinstate certain previously granted and extended product exclusions in the China section 301 Investigation

The Office of the United States Trade Representative announced its determination to reinstate certain previously granted product exclusions in the China section 301 Investigation. The determination reinstates 352 of the 549 eligible exclusions. The reinstated product exclusions will apply as of October 12, 2021 and extend through December 31, 2022.

The reinstated exclusions are set out in the Federal Register notice linked here.

Clients with products that qualify for reinstated exclusions should contact their local JAS Forwarding USA Inc. branch representative to discuss how to assess impact and define next steps to work towards any duty refunds.

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New CBP Website for UFLPA

The Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) is scheduled to go into effect on June 21, 2022. In preparation for the implementation of this act, CBP has created a webpage as well as a new email for questions and information on the implementation of UFLPA. The website will be regularly updated with the most up to date information, and their inbox is open for inquiries and compliance advisement. The Forced Labor Enforcement Task Force (FLETF) will also be holding a public hearing on the methods used to prevent goods produced with forced labor from entering the US. The hearing is on April 8th, and members of the public can register on the CBP site if they wish to provide public testimony.

See the new website here
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ACH and the Benefits
November 1, 2021

U.S. CBP’s ACH (Automated Clearinghouse) is an electronic payment option that allows participants to pay customs fees, duties, and taxes electronically.  This program offers numerous benefits from automation of payables on duties to better accuracy of payments.  Additionally, once importers are signed up for ACH, the PMS (Periodic Monthly Statement) becomes an option which provides additional cash flow benefits.  To learn more, check out our ACH and PMS flyers linked below.

ACH Flyer DownloadPMS Flyer Download
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JAS USA Compliance
October 1, 2021

Did you know that the JAS Forwarding USA Inc. Compliance Team can partner with clients to consult on numerous issues?  Our team has well over 100 combined years of experience in regulatory trade compliance.  Check out our Compliance presentation and let’s connect and see how we can partner.

See the Presentation(PDF)
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The Manhattan U.S. attorney has announced criminal and civil charges against the CEO of an apparel company.  It is alleged that the CEO has engaged in Customs Fraud.  The CEO is suspected of misrepresenting value of imported goods in an attempt to avoid paying lawfully owed customs duties.

Read more details from the U.S. Attorney's Notice
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There are new requirements for importing US and Foreign Goods Returned under HTSUS Chapter 98 (9801.00.10). Previous changes and history are found in the CSMS message linked below and summarized here. On April 25, 2016, a change to HTSUS Chapter 98 for U.S. goods returned went into effect. Specifically, section 904(b) of the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 (TFTEA), “Modification of Provisions Relating to Returned Property,” amended HTSUS Subheading 9801.00.10.

The expansion of Subheading 9801.00.10 includes all products exported from and returned to the United States, regardless of country of origin. For U.S. origin products, there is no time limit on filing a claim. For foreign origin products, there is a 3-year time limit. The changes to 9801.00.10 apply to U.S. or foreign articles returned to the United States and entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after April 25, 2016.

Read More Here
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U.S. Senators Rob Portman and Tom Carper, along with 38 other members of the Senate, sent a letter to U.S. Trade Representative Katherine C. Tai, asking her to restart the exclusion process for imports from China subject to tariffs under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974. The Trump administration set up an exclusion process to help U.S. manufacturers and businesses receive relief from the tariffs when an imported good was not available outside of China, or when the tariffs caused severe economic harm to U.S. industry. Unfortunately, those exclusions expired at the end of 2020, and the Biden administration has not restarted a process for businesses to apply for new exclusions.

Read the Full Article
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The mandate issued by the International Civil Aviation Organization (IACO) from Sept 2016, requires that all air cargo carried by commercial aircraft be screened or have commensurate security measures applied by June 30, 2021.  A 100% requirement for screening of cargo transported on passenger planes has been in effect since August 2010 with freight forwarders successfully meeting this mandate. JAS Forwarding (USA) has long been a member of TSAs Certified Cargo Screening Program and currently has CCSF (Certified Cargo Screening Facility) located in all major gateways

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The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative has announced that there are 100 products that were on the first Section 301 exclusion list and will expire today.  Among these products are electric motors, pump parts, construction equipment, agricultural vehicles, hubs, bearings, capacitors, switches, and dental x-ray equipment.  Please click below to access the list of tariffs that are due to expire.

EXCLUSIONS EXPIRING 07.09.20
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USMCA WEBINAR 06.23.20

(Presentation only file below)

CERTIFICATION FORM

There is no official certificate of origin form for USMCA; however, certification is required at the time of the claim.  Please find a template form that is available below if a form is preferred.

USMCA WEBINAR 06.23.20 - PRESENTATION ONLYUSMCA CERTIFICATION TEMPLATE FORM
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The following presentations are available for informational purposes only related to COVID-19.  Please be advised that the material provided is not legal binding and should not be considered legal advice.

Importing & Exporting PPE - Presentation OnlyImporting & Exporting PPE - Audio VersionPPE Products Export From China - Operation Manual
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SEMICONDUCTOR

On October 25, the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) published in the Federal Register several updates to its comprehensive interim final rule of October 7, 2022, which amended the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to implement controls on advanced computing integrated circuits (ICs), computer commodities that contain such ICs, and certain semiconductor manufacturing items exported to China. The updates, inter alia, adjust the thresholds for which chips are covered by the regulations, expand licensing requirements to an additional 43 countries included in the D:5 Country Group of the EAR, and add several dozen items to the list of controlled semiconductor manufacturing equipment. Exporters of ICs and semiconductor manufacturing items should thoroughly review the notice and submit any comments to BIS by the December 18, 2023, deadline. The Center for Strategic & International Studies has published a concise summary and commentary on these updates prepared by Emily Benson. A link to this commentary is below.

GOAT

Customs and Border Protection Agriculture Specialists (CBPAS) are tasked with preventing the introduction of invasive species and toxic substances into American agriculture and natural resources. To accomplish this task, a CBPAS will utilize targeting, detection and interception techniques while examining passengers returning to the United States and commercial cargo arriving into U.S. ports of entry. CBPAS’ also work to identify and prevent any attempts at agro-terrorism via the intentional introduction of disease or the contamination of food products with toxic substances. The diversity of passengers and cargo attempting to enter the United States on a daily basis can lead to some interesting interceptions by agriculture specialists.

One recent example took place at the Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport in early October. CBPAS’ inspected a small box carried by a passenger returning from Kenya. To the specialists surprise, the box contained giraffe fecal material. The passenger then advised that she had obtained the droppings in Kenya and planned to make a necklace with them, also stating that she had used moose feces at her home in Iowa in the past for the same purpose. The box was then seized and destroyed.

Another recent example occurred at the Chicago O’Hare International Airport. Two passengers returning from Congo were referred for inspection. Inside their baggage was found an unknown meat along with 15 pounds of raw goat viscera including, among other things, the heart, lungs and entire digestive system of a goat. The items, of course, were confiscated. Never a dull moment in the life of a CBPAS!

CBP LOGO

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) quietly unveiled a new online portal, ePetition, for the filing of required documentation for petitions for mitigation of amounts charged in penalty notices and liquidated damage claims. Petition filers, however, should still make contact with the responsible CBP officer stated on the notice to confirm that uploaded documents are well received. Petitions can then subsequently be looked up on the portal and the status checked.

CONTAINERS LA

As of November 1, 2023, the Traffic Mitigation Fee (TMF) charged at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach will increase 4 percent. The increase is a result of the 4 percent increase in longshore wage and assessment rates recently ratified in the coastwide contract between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association. The TMF was instituted as a way to encourage shippers to have their cargo picked up at the terminals during late night shifts or on weekends to reduce the congestion at the terminals occurring during normal business hours. Beginning November 1, the TMF will be $35.57 per TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit) or $71.14 per forty-foot container.

TRAINING GROUP

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) recently announced that it will be providing a quarterly series of webinars free of charge to assist and train small and medium-sized businesses on how to report trade violations that could threaten their bottom line and hurt the overall economy. The webinars will run from November 7, 2023, through September 10, 2024, and will guide participants through the process of reporting commercial trade violations using the Trade Violations Reporting Tool. The webinars will demonstrate how to report allegations of a variety of trade violations, including antidumping and countervailing duty evasion, forced labor, and natural resource crimes.

LEIDEN

On November 23, Thanksgiving Day will be celebrated in the United States. In the town of Leiden, Netherlands stands an ancient church, called the Pieterskerk, that has a unique connection to the Thanksgiving Day celebration. Inside this church, you will find a large display dedicated to the Pilgrims who landed at Plymouth, MA on December 22, 1620. The one hundred or so individuals who arrived in Plymouth on the vessel Mayflower are widely known for having fled England to escape religious persecution for their Puritan faith. However, less widely known, is that many of these pilgrims actually first fled to Leiden in the Netherlands and lived there for around 12 years before setting sail for America. Their pastor John Robinson was buried at this church and there is a prominent memorial display for him inside. The church also has an ancient pipe organ that is still played and that contains some pipes dating to the 1400’s. Another interesting fact about Leiden is that during the same time the pilgrims were living there, a teenager by the name of Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn was living there as well. This young man became known to history as a brilliant painter and printmaker, going simply by his first name, Rembrandt. If you ever travel to the Netherlands, make sure to visit Leiden and the Pieterskerk.

CCSF WAREHOUSE

JAS Forwarding had its ninth facility certified for cargo screening as a Certified Cargo Screening Facility (CCSF) by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) on August 9, 2023. Located in Somerset, NJ, the facility handles eCommerce and, as a result, 60 pallets a day on average are being screened. This equates to approximately 10,000 to 15,000 pieces of cargo being screened at this one facility. With the approaching eCommerce peak season about to start in November, the volume of cargo screened is expected to increase 150%! The primary screening method is K9, therefore, our K9 handlers and K9’s such as Zeus (pictured above and below) will be hard at work!

CLOSED SIGN

A U.S. government shutdown was averted at the eleventh hour on the evening of September 30, when both the House of Representatives and Senate passed bills to extend present government funding levels for 45 days to November 17. Additional aid to Ukraine and provisions to enhance border security were left out of the measures, while a large appropriation of $16 billion for disaster relief was included. The limited term of the measures, however, means that a shutdown could well become imminent again unless longer term funding bills are approved within the next 45 days.

COMPLIANCE PIECE

The Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) imposed a civil penalty of $48,750 against a leading manufacturer of aircraft engines to resolve 13 violations of the antiboycott provisions of the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) as was alleged in a Proposed Charging letter. Between May 2019 and March 2020, the manufacturer received requests on thirteen different occasions from a Middle Eastern airline to not import any Israeli origin goods into the Middle East to fulfill purchase orders from the airline. The manufacturer failed to report to BIS the receipt of these requests as required by 15 CFR 760.5. However, the manufacturer fully cooperated with the investigation and significantly reduced the penalty imposed as a result of the remedial measures taken after discovery of the conduct. This is another reminder of the need to have robust procedures in place to monitor receipt of any such boycott requests and to have a mechanism in place to report them immediately to BIS.

SOFTWOOD LUMBER

Another chapter in the ongoing softwood lumber dispute between the United States and Canada was opened on September 1. Canada’s Trade Minister Mary Ng announced that Canada was launching a Chapter 10 United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) challenge to the latest countervailing duties (CVD) in place on importations of softwood lumber into the U.S. Additionally, a suit is being filed by Canada in the U.S. Court of International Trade to challenge the antidumping duties (ADD) on softwood lumber from Canada also now in effect.

The dispute goes back to 1981 when the U.S. lumber industry first requested the Department of Commerce to investigate Canadian stumpage programs and impose countervaling duties. The issue is rooted in the fact that most Canadian land where softwood lumber is harvested from is owned by provincial governments, and the fees charged to harvest timber on the land, or the stumpage rates, are set by government regulation. In the United States, most softwood timber land is privately owned and the stumpage rates are determined by market forces. U.S. lumber companies have long claimed that the stumpage rates charged to harvesters by the provinces in Canada are well below market rates and are, therefore, countervailable subsidies. An agreement to suspend the application of any ADD or CVD that had been in effect expired in 2015, and the battle has raged on ever since. The World Trade Organization (WTO) ruled in favor of Canada in 2020 and stated that the United States CVD measures were not in conformity with its WTO obligations. However, the U.S. has ignored that determination for the most part. Talks between the leaders of Canada and the U.S. in Ottawa earlier this year did not break the impasse.

COSMETIC BAG FDA REGISTRATION

The Food and Drug Administration recently published its much anticipated Draft Guidance on Registration and Listing of Cosmetic Product Facilities and Products as mandated by the Modernization of Cosmetics Regulation Act of 2022. The guidance provides details on which facilities must register and the information required to be provided in cosmetic product listings. FDA also published screenshots for the “Cosmetics Direct” electronic submissions portal to be utilized for the registration and listings. The portal is supposed to be available in October.

CRITICAL MINERALS

The recent passage of the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 along with the increased attention given to clean energy transportation alternatives and environmental protection has highlighted the increasingly important role played in the economy by what are termed critical minerals and rare earth elements. The Intergovernmental Forum on Mining, Minerals, Metals and Sustainable Development (IGF) has published a very helpful primer that explains what these items are, where the main sources of supply are, and their end uses and applications. The IGF is a forum of more than 80 member countries established to support the advancing of sustainable development goals through effective laws, policies, and regulations for the mining sector.

As the primer states, critical minerals are the minerals and metals necessary for renewable energy and clean technology. It further states that “there is no universally agreed upon definition of what “criticality” means, and criticality changes over time, depending on the needs of society and the availability of supply”. Rare earth elements are “a set of 17 metallic elements that are considered critical because of their properties”. These elements are not in fact rare but are referred to as rare because they can be difficult to extract and can be complex to process.

The need for and importance of these minerals and elements will only increase and will continue to have major impacts on United States trade policy and the logistics industry.

FTZ CONFERENCE OCTOBER

JAS employees were on the move in September as Compliance Project Manager Scott Cassell and Miami FTZ Administrator Ivel Martinez attended the National Association of Foreign-Trade Zones “Celebrating 50 Years of NAFTZ” conference held in Miami on September 10 to 13. JAS operates foreign trade zones (FTZ) in both Charleston, SC and Miami, FL and the conference was a great opportunity for the JAS team to stay abreast of the current issues and regulatory changes affecting FTZ’s.

The entire JAS compliance team also meet on September 19 and 20 at the JAS headquarters in Atlanta for their annual meeting. Led by Vice President of Compliance Laurie Arnold this year’s theme was “Coming together is a beginning, keeping together is progress, working together is success!”. Various topics were discussed and strategies for the coming year were formulated.

HALLOWEEN

It is October and that means Halloween is around the corner! The Library of Congress reports that Halloween has its roots in the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced “SAH-win”). Samhain was a pagan religious celebration at the time of the harvest at the end of summer in which people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. Then, in the eight century, Pope Gregory III designated November 1 as a day to honor Catholic saints and this was called All Saints Day. All Saints Day incorporated some of the traditions of Samhain. The evening before All Saints Day then became a holiday as well and was celebrated as All Hallows Eve, from which we derive Halloween. The Halloween tradition of carving pumpkins into Jack O’Lanterns is rooted in the Celtic legend about a man named Stingy Jack who was able to repeatedly trap the devil and would only let him go if he promised that Jack would never go to hell. However, when Jack died, heaven did not want him either, so he had to wander the earth as a ghost for eternity. The devil then gave Jack a burning lump of coal in a carved-out turnip to light his way. The tradition then started in Ireland of carving scary faces in turnips to frighten the ghost of Jack and other evil spirits away. Have a safe and happy Halloween and look out for Jack!

Worker Examination

In a Federal Register notice, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced the opportunity for qualified, interested shippers to register as Certified Cargo Screening Facilities (CCSF). While the TSA had approved shippers to become CCSF’s previously when requested, the TSA had never fully integrated these operations into the Certified Cargo Screening Standard Security Program (CCSSSP). An incentive for shippers to consider becoming a CCSF is that, on October 31, the Impracticable to Screen (ITS) amendments that the TSA had in effect will expire. These amendments allowed cargo not easily screened due to the commodity packaging type or size to move via airfreight. After October 31, ITS cargo will require 100% screening. ITS cargo could be screened by the airline or other third-party service provider, however, higher costs for the shipper are likely to result.

To initiate the registration process, shippers must send an email indicating their interest to an address identified in the notice and TSA will respond with additional information regarding the application requirements.

PCB

Several prominent information technology associations, including the Semiconductor Industry Association, Retail Industry Leaders Association, and the Information Technology Industry Council, sent a letter to U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai and Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo expressing concern over the recent announcement by the Indian Government to require a license to import computers and related information and communication technology products into India. The licensing requirement is to take effect on November 1, 2023. One concern raised was that the licensing regime could make it difficult for U.S. companies with data centers in India to import servers into India that are needed for their operations. While the government announcement included certain exemptions, the associations requested more comprehensive details on the scope of the exemptions. Licensing requirements have also been used in the past as major non-tariff import barriers by various countries, which was another concern raised. The U.S. government was urged to request that India reconsider the implementation of the policy.

Pencils

In an important recent decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled in the case, Royal Brush Manufacturing, Inc. vs. United States Dixon Ticonderoga Company, that Customs and Border Protection (CBP) violated the Fifth Amendment right to due process of Royal Brush by providing only redacted versions of reports that CBP utilized in making its determination that antidumping duty (ADD) evasion occurred in connection with an Enforce and Protect Act (EAPA) investigation. The EAPA investigation centered around pencils shipped from the Philippines to Royal Brush in the United States. CBP concluded that the pencils were of Chinese origin and were transshipped via the Philippines to avoid paying the ADD under case A-570-827 for Cased Pencils from China. However, in making this determination, CBP relied on reports from a verification visit made to the Philippine factory. When Royal Brush requested copies of the reports, production number data and photographs taken at the factory were redacted due to CBP deeming this information to be confidential business information. CBP stated that there was no provision in the EAPA law itself that empowered them to issue a protective order which could have allowed release of the confidential information. Royal Brush then filed suit in the Court of International Trade (CIT).

The CIT ruled in favor of CBP, then Royal Brush appealed. The appellate court stated in its decision: “In short, the law is clear that, in adjudicative administrative proceedings, due process includes the right to know what evidence is being used against one.” The decision further stated: “As best we can make out, the government’s argument is that due process does not require public disclosure of confidential business information relied on in adjudication but only requires disclosure to affected parties under protective orders… We are aware of no case supporting any such extraordinary theory, and it is untenable on its face. The right to due process does not depend on whether statutes and regulations provide what is required by the constitution.” The case was remanded back to the CIT for CBP to provide Royal Brush the redacted information and give them an opportunity for rebuttal.

In legal circles, it is believed that this decision could also have an impact on CBP’s investigations under the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act as CBP often does not release the evidence that it has compiled to the party whose cargo is being detained, which may now lead to court challenges of those decisions.

Allow Delay

In separate Cargo Systems Messaging Service (CSMS) messages, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced postponements of two important system enhancements. First, CBP stated on 08/22/23 that it was disabling the testing of the Ocean House Bill Release in its ACE test Certification Environment. This testing was a precursor to having Ocean Bill Release go live in ACE. A new date for when either testing will continue or the Ocean House Bill Release will go live is to be determined.

Also, on 08/25/23 CBP announced that it was postponing the migration of declarations-related functionality as a part of the Phase 4 ACE portal functionality modernization. A new date for this update is to be determined as well.

Law Book

Violations of anti-boycott prohibitions enforced by the Commerce Department via the Export Administration Regulations and the Internal Revenue Service via Internal Revenue Code Section 999(a)(3) can lead to very costly penalties, as law firm Sandler, Travis , & Rosenberg reminded the trade in a recent article. Any company that agrees to or actually refuses to do business with or discriminates against Israel or other blacklisted companies, inter alia, can be subject to these penalties, which include hefty fines and even jail time for criminal violations. Therefore, companies must perform their due diligence to ensure that violations of these regulations are not occurring anywhere in their operations.

Passport

In a recent advisory opinion, the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) of the Commerce Department, set forth the requirements for the export, reexport, or transfer of licensed technology and software between a licensed U.S. entity and foreign nationals of a related foreign company who are on temporary rotational assignment in the United States. As long as the technology or software is within the scope of the license in question, then release to these foreign nationals would be authorized. However, any new technology or software to be released to these foreign nationals that is not authorized by the existing license would require a new export license.

USTR Logo

In a notice to be published in the Federal Register, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) announced that it will be extending to December 31, 2023 the 352 previously reinstated Section 301 duty exclusions and the 77 COVID-related 301 exclusions that were set to expire on September 30. The required four-year review of the Section 301 duties imposed on certain products from China is still underway and this extension will allow for a transition period as that review continues.

American Flag

Hard to believe, but it will be 22 years this September 11th since the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 caused the death of nearly 3,000 people at the World Trade Center in New York, the Pentagon in Virginia and on United Airlines Flight 93 that crashed in Pennsylvania. We still mourn and honor those whose lives were sacrificed. What you may not know is that 187 years prior another event occurred in the month of September. On September 14, 1814, poet Francis Scott Key was watching the British bombardment of Fort McHenry in Baltimore during the continuation of the War of 1812 between the United States and Britain. As the U.S. soldiers gained the advantage, a large U.S. flag was hoisted above the fort. Inspired by the bravery and tenacity of the soldiers, Key penned the words to a song titled “The Star-Spangled Banner” and the rest, of course, is history! In remembrance of those who lost their lives on September 11th, we share a not so well-known additional stanza of the anthem:

O thus be it ever when freemen shall stand

Between their loved home and the war's desolation!

Blest with victory and peace may the heaven rescued land

Praise the power that hath made and preserved us a nation!

Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,

And this be our motto - "In God is our trust,"

And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave

Over the land of the free and the home of the brave

SHEFFIELD HALLAM RELEASES EXTENSIVE LIST OF UYGHUR REGION COMPANIES

Sheffield Hallam University in the United Kingdom via its Forced Labor Lab released another forced labor resource in the form of a spreadsheet listing over 50,000 companies that operate in the Uyghur Region of China. The spreadsheet also has a section grouping over 35,000 companies under specific industry categories. Sheffield Hallam provides numerous resources on its website relating to forced labor issues in the Uyghur region, including a 50+ page report on automotive supply chain connections to forced labor in the region.

United States Capitol

A letter signed by 66 members of the U.S. House of Representatives was sent to the Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, Rep. Jason Smith of Missouri, urging renewal of the Generalized System of Preferences Program (GSP). The GSP is a trade program that provides nonreciprocal, duty free treatment for certain U.S. imports from eligible developing countries. The program expired in December 2020. Various measures to renew the program have been introduced since its expiration, some with provisions to alter eligibility requirements, however, the program remains expired at present.

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