JAS USA COMPLIANCE

News & Insights from JAS Worldwide Compliance

JAS Forwarding (USA), Inc.

6165 Barfield Road
Atlanta GA, 30328
United States
Tel: +1 (770)688-1206
Fax: +1 (770)688-1229

COMPLIANCE SOLUTIONS

JAS USA Compliance Insights

JAS Attended Events

JAS USA Compliance Insights on the Impact of COVID-19

JAS on the Move
October 1, 2021

Our very own Laurie Arnold, Vice President Compliance for JAS Forwarding USA Inc. was a guest speaker at the National Customs Brokers & Freight Forwarders Association of America, Government Affairs Conference in Washington DC on Sept 21. She spoke on the Customs Business Fairness Act HR 4816 bill that she as the NCBFAA Legislative Committee Chair has been championing to become permanent.  This bill would protect Customs Brokers from having to reach into their pocket and pay customs duties to the court for redistribution due to the 90-day claw back bankruptcy law.  The customs broker would have collected that customs duty from the importer and already paid it to US Customs. If the importer files bankruptcy the broker must pay that money back if in the 90-day period but US Customs would keep the funds already paid.

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JAS Representatives Attend NCBFAA
June 3, 2021

Laurie Arnold and Leah Ellis of Corporate Compliance at JAS Forwarding attended the NCBFAA annual conference and provided their committee reports at the annual meeting.  The NCBFAA conference is an annual event that brings together more than 600 international trade representatives from across the United States to discuss trade affairs.

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Customs Business Fairness Act Passes
January 5, 2021

Congress has included the Customs Business Fairness Act on Dec. 21 as part of the latest coronavirus relief package that changes the way U.S. bankruptcy law is applied to customs brokers when importers become insolvent. Under the current law, a customs broker may be ordered by the bankruptcy trustee to give back the duty paid to it by the insolvent importer during the past 90 days. It does not matter to the bankruptcy trustee whether that money has already been paid to Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to cover import duties.

The provisions amend various sections of the Bankruptcy Code on a temporary basis to provide additional relief to customs brokerage businesses directly impacted by COVID-19 pandemic.

Laurie Arnold, Regulatory Officer of JAS Forwarding USA Corporate Compliance, along with Whitmer and Worrall, led the NCBFAA's latest lobbying effort to include the bankruptcy bill in the latest COVID-19 relief legislation.  Congratulations Laurie and everyone that helped to make this happen!

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JAS is on the Move!
August 5, 2020
Free Lunch for Truck Drivers Initiative in Virginia

Acts of kindness are contagious!!  After seeing a similar initiative to feed truckers in Atlanta the broker’s association in Virginia decided to follow through with a similar initiative!  CBIFFA (organization Customs Brokerage and International Freight Forwarding of Virginia) led by JAS Compliance USA Team Member Tiffany Coffey provided 100 free lunch boxes, water, and snacks to truck drivers.  It was their way of saying thank you to drivers for being on the front-line servicing logistics needs in the middle of a pandemic!  Way to go Tiffany and the CBIFFA team in Virginia!

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JAS USA Compliance Conducts Webinar on USMCA
July 7, 2020

The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is the trade agreement that is scheduled to replace NAFTA and enter into force effective July 1, 2020.  JAS USA Compliance held a webinar to discuss an overview of the trade agreement and provided resources and helpful information regarding the implementation of the agreement.  To listen to the audio of the webinar and access the certification template form, please visit our website by clicking HERE!

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JAS Miami Branch Host Canine Screening Demo
April 5, 2020

In March 2019, JAS Forwarding Miami Branch was very pleased to have MSA Security on site for a live demo of their canine screening process.  The 3PK9 Security Program allows airlines and freight forwarders to utilize private sector canine teams as a primary screening method.  Essentially, reducing time and cost compared to other screening procedures.

Read More on the Live Demo
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JAS is On the Move
March 5, 2020

Laurie Arnold presented to the Atlanta International Forwarders and Brokers Association (AIFBA) a legislative update on the HR2261 Bankruptcy Bill, the section 301 tariff and an update on the USMCA that will replace NAFTA.  Laurie is actively engaged in local organizations is committed to working with National Customs Brokers and Freight Forwarding Association (NCBFAA) diligently to get Bill HR2261 passed into law.

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JAS is On the Move - February 2020
February 6, 2020

JAS USA Compliance Members visit Savannah Port

Laurie Arnold (Regulatory Compliance Officer) and Leah Ellis (Corporate Compliance Specialist) of JAS USA Compliance attended a port tour at the Savannah Port with other leaders of the NCBFAA.  They were able to get an up-close and personal view of vessel operations and learned about the new and exciting plans for the port’s rail and vessel operations!

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JAS' Laurie Arnold Attends Meeting at Senator Lindsay Graham's
January 7, 2020

Laurie Arnold, Regulatory Compliance Officer of JAS Forwarding and Legislative Committee Chair for NCBFAA, attended a meeting organized by NCBFAA at Senator Lindsay Graham’s office in Washington DC.  The meeting was to discuss the bankruptcy bill (HR2261 currently in the house with 25 Congressional co-sponsors) and to try to get the Senate version underway.  She is diligently working with industry professionals on the bill in an attempt to get it passed into law.

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NCBFAA Meets with U.S. Customs Commissioners
December 4, 2019

​Laurie Arnold of JAS Worldwide, Legislative Committee Chair for NCBFAA, attended a meeting organized by NCBFAA with US Customs Deputy Commissioner Robert Perez and many other CBP Commissioners to discuss various topics related to our industry. Topics included de minimis entry type 86, power of attorney vetting, the recent customs broker exam and the need for collaboration and direct communication between the forwarding, brokerage community and US Customs.  This is one way that JAS is keeping the clients’ interest in front of US Customs and any potential changes that may impact the industry!

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JAS Hosts Importer Seminar at Headquarters in Atlanta
September 4, 2019

On August 22nd, JAS USA Compliance held a seminar for importers with the emphasis on “Adapting Compliance Solutions in the Evolution of Constant Change.” Relevant topics were discussed such as duty drawback, tariff engineering, incoterms, trade agreements, antidumping/countervailing and more!

Contact your JAS Compliance Team for more information!

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JAS USA Compliance Holds First of Several Webinar Series
April 5, 2019

On March 27th, JAS USA Compliance conducted or first FREE webinar open to current and potential JAS Import Clients.  During this session, we discussed Section 232 & 301 tariffs and how it affects customs bonds, tariff exclusions and more!  Please find the link below to review all of the questions and answers that were discussed in the webinar session.  More webinars to come throughout the year!

Read the Q&A From the First Webinar
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It's a Bird? It's a Plane? It's JAS Compliance!
May 2, 2018

Recently, our very own Compliance Officer Laurie Arnold was “flying” high, as her and Compliance Specialist Scott Cassell did an onsite audit for a company with airplanes.  

Did you know that JAS Corporate Compliance offers internal auditing and other value added services?

​We offer the following services for clients that include but not limited to:  

  • Client On-site audit and periodic review services.
  • HTS, valuation, marking, ruling, and specialized commodity consulting.
  • Customs Compliance Training (Import & Export)
  • CTPAT Import & Export Guidance
  • Collaboration in the development and maintenance of Import & Export Compliance Manuals

For more information on any of these services, please contact your local JAS Representative today!

Contact Your Local JAS Representative
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JAS Forwarding USA Inc. Goes Live on ACAS
April 2, 2018

As of Monday March 20, 2018 JAS Forwarding (USA) is now assisting CBP and TSA on its initiative to provide enhanced security for air cargo coming into the United States.  The Air Cargo Advanced Screening (ACAS) initiative was created by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to gather data concerning the parties and commodities involved in air cargo prior to its loading on an aircraft at a foreign port. The initiative is currently in the pilot phase allowing CBP to collaborate with the air cargo industry to determine the most effective means of achieving the desired regulatory results without affecting the speed of air cargo operations.

Read More on ACAS Pilot Screenings
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JAS Charleston is an Approved Foreign Trade Zone
January 2, 2018

Effective December 2017, the JAS Charleston branch has been approved by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) as a Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ)!  This is the first FTZ within JAS!  Foreign Trade Zones are secure areas under Customs and Border Protection supervision that are generally considered outside of CBP territory upon activation.  Foreign and domestic merchandise may be moved into the zones for operation, not otherwise prohibited by law including storage, exhibition, assembly, manufacturing and processing.  Under zone procedures, the usual formal CBP entry procedures and payments of duties are not required on the foreign merchandise unless and until it enters CBP territory for domestic consumption.  For more information on the JAS FTZ, please contact your local JAS Representative!

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JAS Corporate Compliance Attends BIS Conference
November 6, 2017

The Bureau of Industry and Security annual Update Export Control Policy Conference gives the exporting community the opportunity to learn first-hand from senior U.S. Government officials about current issues and trends in export control policies, regulations and practices. This major outreach activity draws business and government representatives from around the world to exchange ideas about export control issues. It provides attendees with the opportunity to interact with U.S. Government officials about programs and services offered by U.S. Government and industry exhibitors. It is one of the Department of Commerce’s most notable international trade events.  In attendance from JAS Forwarding were Laurie Arnold (Regulatory Compliance Officer) and Tiffany Coffey (Corporate Compliance Specialist).

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JAS USA Foreign Trade Zone
October 9, 2017

CLUE #1

The JAS USA Compliance team will be attending the NAFTZ Conference next week in San Diego, CA- USA

Here is the first clue - the Foreign Trade Zone pending activation is on the opposite coast from the NAFTZ Conference.  Activation appears to be very close.

Stay tuned for more information.

Questions?  Contact us today!

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JAS Compliance Visits Branches for Audits
October 2, 2017
From left to right: Drew Pollitz (San Francisco Operations Manager), Tiffany Coffey (Corporate Compliance Specialist), Jorge Suarez (San Francisco Branch Manager)

JAS Corporate Compliance staff conducts internal compliance audits at each of our branches annually.  The purpose of the audit is designed to monitor and evaluate our internal control environment as to its adequacy, efficiency and effectiveness as it relates to customs compliance.

JAS Corporate Compliance also offers value added services for clients such as:

  • Client On-site audit and periodic review services.
  • HTS, valuation, marking, ruling, and specialized commodity consulting.
  • Customs Compliance Training (Import & Export)
  • CTPAT Import & Export Guidance
  • Collaboration in the development and maintenance of import & export compliance manuals

For more information on any of these services, please contact your local JAS Representative today!

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Remarks to the NCBFAA Govt. Affairs Conference
October 2, 2017

In Washington D.C. at the National Customs Broker & Forwarders Association of America (NCBFAA) Government Affairs Conference (GAC), representatives of the association and government legislators sat down to discuss issues that matter to international trade.  Some of the issues that were discussed are:

  • NAFTA Renegotiation
  • The Customs Business Fairness Act
  • The Use of Harbor Maintenance Fees
  • Generalized System Preferences (GSP) Renewal

The GAC is a conference held annually.  In attendance from JAS Forwarding USA were Scott Cassell and Leah Ellis from corporate compliance.

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JAS USA Compliance Hosts Export Conference
September 8, 2017

In early August, JAS employees’ from across the country traveled to JAS Headquarters in Atlanta, GA to attend an export conference.  For two days, the conference provided hands on training and presentations on various export topics including red flags, restricted countries, routed transactions, dangerous goods and many more!  The conference was a success and the knowledge gained was valuable information for all of the attendee’s!  ​

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G-TEC Conference 2017
September 8, 2017

​JAS Forwarding employees’ attended the G-TEC Conference 2017 this year. This is a two-day event that gives customs brokers, freight forwarders, NVOCCs, service providers, importers, exporters and global logistics professionals an opportunity to receive updates on industry developments.

In attendance from JAS Forwarding was (left to right) Dan Zupko, Ginger Shalkowski, Laurie Arnold and Leah Ellis.

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JAS USA Employees Attend Seminar About FSVP Rule
July 11, 2017
From left to right: Tiffany Coffey (Corporate Compliance Specialist), Stefania Poli (Route Development Manager, Italy), Laurie Arnold (Regulatory Compliance Officer), Leah Ellis (Corporate Compliance Specialist), Scott Cassell (Corporate Compliance Specialist)

On June 13, 2017 a team of JAS USA employees’ attended a seminar entitled “Navigating the U.S. FDA Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP) Rule.”  The Foreign Supplier Verification Program is a newly implemented rule by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.  It requires importers to perform certain risk-based activities that ensures food imported into the United States has been produced in a manner that meets applicable U.S. safety standards.  Importers are also required to ensure that products are not adulterated or misbranded with respect to allergen labeling.  The seminar provided in-depth knowledge of the rule.  The knowledge obtained will assist our JAS teams with being able to answer questions and guide importers in the process of complying with this rule.  JAS USA is committed to following the development of the market and supports the customers’ needs as necessary!

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JAS Corporate Compliance is On The Move
April 4, 2017

Leah Ellis, Compliance Specialist at JAS Forwarding USA Inc, was the guest speaker at the Atlanta International Forwarders & Brokers Association Monthly meeting where she presented a training session on Customs ACE Portal. She reviewed how to navigate through the portal and reporting tools available for Importers, Exporters and Brokers. She has also conducted a seminar with the Houston Broker’s Association on the ACE Portal.

Additionally, Laurie Arnold, Regulatory Compliance Offer at JAS Forwarding USA Inc, was invited to be a guest speaker at the Importer Seminar for the Midwest Global Trade Association. She spoke on the hot topic that all customs brokers would desperately love to provide input to “What Can Importer’s Do to help their Customs Broker?” Her presentation and input was well received!

For more information on JAS Compliance and speaking engagements, please contact compliance@jas.com.

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JAS Deploys For Advance Screening of Air Cargo
April 3, 2017

"Descartes Systems Group, the global leader in uniting logistics-intensive businesses in commerce, announced that JAS Forwarding Inc. is using the cloud-based Descartes Air Cargo Advance Screening solution to provide enhanced security for air cargo coming into the United States," stated an article by the American Journal of Transportation. The Air Cargo Advanced Screening initiative was created by CBP in order to gather data about the parties and commodities involved in air cargo, before loading takes place on an aircraft at a foreign port. This initiative is in the pilot phase currently. CBP has also been able to communicate with the air industry to determine the best ways of achieving the desired regulatory results without affecting the speed of air cargo operations.

From the article:

“Technology innovation remains a cornerstone of our mission to ensure worldwide transparency and an efficient supply chain for our customers by delivering their cargo on time and securely,” said Laurie Arnold, Regulatory Compliance Officer at JAS Forwarding Inc. “With the Descartes solution, we’re not only an early adopter of the ACAS pilot program but are sharing information with CBP further back in the supply chain to help identify high-risk air shipments into the U.S. while accelerating the movement of low-risk shipments.”

Read More

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Remarks to the NCBFAA Govt. Affairs Conference
October 4, 2016

In Washington D.C. at the National Customs Broker & Forwarders Association of America (NCBFAA) Government Affairs Conference (GAC), representatives of the association (including JAS’s very own Laurie Arnold and Leah Ellis) and government legislators sat down to discuss issues that matter to international trade.  The GAC Conference is held annually.

Some of the issues that were discussed are:

  • Extending funds for Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) through 2018.
  • Recognizes and validates the efforts to expand the Centers of Excellence and Expertise.
  • Modernizing drawback, simplifying the process for duty refunds and increasing efficiencies for trade stakeholders.
  • Establishing key aspects of the organizational structure including the Executive Assistant Commissioner positions.
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According to a release order published by the White House, CBP announced that they will be detaining silica-based products made by Hoshine Silicon Industry Co., Ltd. and its subsidiaries.  CBP indicated that there is an indication that the company used forced labor in manufacturing these products. The polysilicon produced in the Xinjiang region of China is a core material in solar panels made in Asia.

Is your product being investigated for possible antidumping or countervailing duties?  Do you know how to find if it is before a formalized case has published?  The International Trade Commission (USITC) publishes public notices regarding investigations, solicitations, public comments, and questionnaires.  Click HERE to go to the USITC webpage for public notices.

FDA regulates sunscreens to ensure they meet safety and effectiveness standards. To improve the quality, safety, and effectiveness of sunscreens, FDA issued requirements and it must pass certain tests before they are sold.  Also, how you use the product, and other protective measures you take, make a difference in how well you can protect yourself and your family from sunburn, skin cancer, early skin aging and other risks of overexposure to the sun.

Here are some key sun safety tips:

  • Limit time in the sun, especially between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., when the sun’s rays are most intense.
  • Wear clothing to cover skin exposed to the sun, such as long-sleeved shirts, pants, sunglasses, and broad-brimmed hats.
  • Use broad spectrum sunscreens with SPF values of 15 or higher regularly and as directed.
  • Reapply sunscreen at least every two hours, and more often if you are sweating or jumping in and out of the water.

Enjoy your summer and have fun in the sun!

Re-Export Under the EAR

Date:  July 28, 2021

Location:  VIRTUAL

The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) will offer a virtual seminar entitled Reexports under the EAR.  The seminar will explain how to determine if items made outside the United States are subject to the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) by using the Foreign Direct Product (FDP) rules, including the new Entity List related FDP, and the De minimis rules.  They will also discuss how to apply for a reexport license, common license exceptions used to reexport, and compliance tips.

Register Here

2021 Virtual Update Conference on Export Controls & Policy

Date: September 2, 2021

Location:  VIRTUAL

The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) is preparing for its annual Update Conference on Export Controls. This major outreach activity draws business and government representatives from around the world to learn and exchange ideas about export control issues. It is one of the Department’s most notable international trade events.

Register Here

U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced its seizure of a shipment of nitrile disposable gloves from Malaysia suspected of being made with forced labor. This announcement confirms that a recent seizure authorization is broader than the original withholds release order and that CBP is in fact acting under that authorization.

Senate Finance Committee Chair, Ron Wyden, announced legislation to update and reauthorize three expired trade programs: Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB) and the American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act (AMCA). The Trade Preferences and American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act of 2021 will extend duty-free access to the U.S. market for certain developing countries under GSP until 2027, with important updates to eligibility rules that ensure trade policy rewards advances in human rights, women’s economic empowerment, labor, environment, rule of law and digital trade, among others.

Fabrics for Specialized Uses

Date: June 21, 2021

Location:  VIRTUAL

This webinar hosted by Customs & Border Protection will cover information as it relates to importing fabrics of specialized uses.

SIA 2021 Virtual Summer Back to Basics Conference

Date:  July 12-16, 2021

Location:  VIRTUAL

This five-session conference will provide attendees with the important first step to exporting articles on the United States Munitions List (USML) and the Commerce Control List (CCL) and the associated defense services and technology. This webinar is deal for newcomers (less than 5 years of experience) to exporting under the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) and the Export Administration Regulations (EAR). Attendees will become familiar with the various types of licenses, agreements, exemptions and exceptions and the requirements and conditions associated with each.

Laurie Arnold and Leah Ellis of Corporate Compliance at JAS Forwarding attended the NCBFAA annual conference and provided their committee reports at the annual meeting.  The NCBFAA conference is an annual event that brings together more than 600 international trade representatives from across the United States to discuss trade affairs.

The new version of the publication “Don’t Let This Happen to You” is now available!  This publication is an introduction to the consequences of violating U.S. Export Control laws.  It includes actual investigations, export control and antiboycott violations published by the Bureau of Industry Security.  

To read the access the latest version, CLICK HERE.

Ahhh, the smell of ripe strawberries lingers in the air as one of the most wonderful times of the year has arrived…. SUMMER!  

Consider strawberry picking as a family friendly outdoor activity this year!  Most of us are accustomed to strawberries from the grocery that were shipped in from faraway places and picked perhaps a bit early to ensure smooth travels.   Local strawberries are a totally different experience.  You are selecting each one yourself at the peak of perfection.  They are ripe and red totally through and filled with flavor beyond comparison.

Here are 5 tips to make your strawberry picking experience the best!

  1. Pick on a weekday when strawberry availability is at its peak. Strawberries ripen over time and supplies are best mid-week.
  2. Arrive right when the farm opens on weekends.
  3. Local Berries are Fragile. Eat your strawberries or freeze them within 24 hours of picking.  
  4. Dress for Picking!  You are visiting a working farm so close-toed shoes, sun hat and sunscreen are in order.  
  5. Please pay for your Strawberries before eating them. It is hugely tempting to eat strawberries while picking, but strawberries are sold by the pound at most farms so you will need to weigh and pay before you enjoy.

Enjoy!! Cheers to the summer!

President Biden announced on April 12th his intent to nominate Chris Magnus, who has served as police chief of Tucson, Ariz., since January 2016, as commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

According to a White House press release, Magnus rose through the ranks of the Lansing, Mich., police department and has also served as police chief in the cities of Fargo, N.D., and Richmond, Calif. “In each of these cities,” the press release said, “Magnus developed a reputation as a progressive police leader who focused on relationship-building between the police and community, implementing evidence-based best practices, promoting reform, and insisting on police accountability.” The White House also cited Magnus’ “extensive experience in addressing immigration issues” during his time in Tucson near the U.S.-Mexico border.

Enforcement of the prohibition of importation of goods mined, produced, or manufactured by forced labor is on the rise. CBP has published a webpage that contains withhold release orders issued by the Commissioner and findings published in the Federal Register. CBP does not generally publicize specific detentions, re-exportations, exclusions, or seizures of the subject merchandise that may have resulted from the withhold release orders or findings.

On April 29, 2021, Kevin J. Kurland, Acting Assistant Secretary for Export Enforcement, Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) of the U.S. Department of Commerce, announced an administrative settlement of $3,290,000 with SAP SE (SAP), a multinational software company based in Walldorf, Germany. SAP also agreed to complete three audits of its export compliance program over a three-year period. SAP voluntarily self-disclosed potential violations of the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to BIS and cooperated with the investigation conducted by the Boston Field Office of BIS’s Office of Export Enforcement.

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) announced the next steps in its Section 301 investigations of Digital Service Taxes (DSTs) adopted or under consideration by ten U.S. trading partners.   In January, USTR found that the DSTs adopted by Austria, India, Italy, Spain, Turkey, and the United Kingdom were subject to action under Section 301 because they discriminated against U.S. digital companies, were inconsistent with principles of international taxation, and burdened U.S. companies.  USTR is proceeding with the public notice and comment process on possible trade actions to preserve procedural options before the conclusion of the statutory one-year period for completing the investigations.

Did you know that Harbor Maintenance Fees (HMF) are exempt on an Entry Summary line (when MOT 10 vessel non-containerized, 11 vessel containerized, or 12 barge) when the article is classified under some HTS chapter 98 provisions?  Chapter 9808 has been added to that list. The HTS chapter 98 provisions that exempt the HMF are now 9804, 9805, 9806, 9807, 9808, and 9809.

Did you know that the Memorial Day Holiday used to be known as Decoration Day?  The holiday was celebrated by “decorating” the graves of fallen soldiers with flowers, flags, and more, hence the name “Decoration Day.” Over time, it became known as Memorial Day.  

We honor the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. Military, particularly those who died in battle or because of wounds sustained in battle.

SIA 2021 Spring Virtual Advanced Conference

Date:  May 17-19, 2021

Location:  VIRTUAL

This is a three-day VIRTUAL advanced level forum focusing on the processes and procedures relating to export controls and compliance.  Agenda topics will address a variety of advanced issues of concern to the international trade community in a more intimate setting with attendees from industry, government, and other international trade specialists.


Complying with U.S. Export Controls

Date: June 8-11, 2021

Location:  VIRTUAL

The two-day program is led by BIS's professional counseling staff and provides an in-depth examination of the Export Administration Regulations (EAR). The program will cover the information exporters need to know to comply with U.S. export control requirements on commercial goods.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced on March 29th that it has directed personnel at all U.S. ports of entry to begin seizing disposable gloves produced in Malaysia by Top Glove Corporation Bhd. (Top Glove).  The CBP Office of Trade published a forced labor finding against disposable gloves produced in Malaysia by Top Glove in the Customs Bulletin and in the Federal Register.  The finding communicates that CBP has sufficient information to believe that Top Glove uses forced labor in the production of disposable gloves. Merchandise covered by the forced labor finding is subject to seizure upon arrival at a U.S. port of entry.

The U.S. Trade Representative has modified the actions being taken in the investigation of civil aircraft dispute on European products.  The 15% tariffs on civil aircraft and 25% tariffs on approx. 150 tariff lines of products including liquor, Italian food and beverages, lenses, Greek yogurt, Spanish pork, and more were lifted at 12:01 a.m. March 11, and will remain suspended until midnight July 10.

Exclusions from the Section 301 additional tariffs on imports from China for 99 medical care products needed to address the COVID-19 pandemic are being extended through Sept. 30, 2021. These exclusions were scheduled to expire March 31; however, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative has determined that these items are needed to combat the pandemic.

On December 23, 2020, the U.S. Department of Commerce (Commerce) published a final rule in the Federal Register adopting the Aluminum Import Monitoring and Analysis (AIM) system regulations and establishing an AIM website. The AIM website consists of an online aluminum import license application platform and public AIM monitor. Commerce published a notice of a delay in January with an effective date of March 29, 2021.  This has been delayed again and is now effective June 28, 2021.  This delay means that licenses will not be required for covered aluminum product imports until June 28, 2021. Further information and a revised effective date will be provided in the Federal Register notice.

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) announced the next steps in its Section 301 investigations of Digital Service Taxes (DSTs) adopted or under consideration by ten U.S. trading partners.  In January, USTR found that the DSTs adopted by Austria, India, Italy, Spain, Turkey, and the United Kingdom were subject to action under Section 301 because they discriminated against U.S. digital companies, were inconsistent with principles of international taxation, and burdened U.S. companies.  USTR is proceeding with the public notice and comment process on possible trade actions to preserve procedural options before the conclusion of the statutory one-year time period for completing the investigations.

On March 1, 2021, the U.S. Court of International Trade (CIT) issued a decision with important ramifications for any company that uses “first sale” to reduce customs duty liability for goods imported into the United States.  All companies relying on first sale should review their first sale programs to evaluate the impact of this ruling and take adequate precautions.

Roll up your sleeves and get your garden ready for Summer on April 14, as it is National Gardening Day. Gardening is a fun and relaxing hobby enjoyed by many, and this is the perfect day for those who have been wanting to take up gardening to finally gather their tools and seeds and get their hands dirty. National Gardening Day happens at the height of Spring, so it is the perfect day to start growing your flowers, vegetables, herbs, and fruits, so they are ready to be enjoyed in the Summer. Even if you don't have a garden, you can still exercise your green fingers on houseplants, and bring the outside in.  Happy Spring!!

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