ON OUR DESKS
- Preparing comments for USTR’s 4-year review of Section 301 China tariffs
- Assisted with export licensing to China
- Advising on EU trade restrictions on Russia
How can we help you? Email any IBC counsellor for assistance or consult our issues list to find the expert you’re looking for.
In case you missed it:
- November 2: Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for the Western Hemisphere Ian Saunders, U.S. competitiveness strategies and economic priorities in the Americas
Up next: Register for upcoming WIBC discussions here
- November 9: Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Trade Policy and Negotiations Tony Fernandes, Global trade policy and negotiations affecting international business
- November 16: Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources and former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt, International energy policy
WIBC discussions are open to WIBC members only. Not a member? Contact Christina for membership inquiries.
YOU NEED TO KNOW
China Tariffs, Taiwan, IPEF
The U.S. Trade Representative’s Office (USTR) released a set of questions this week to guide private sector submissions in response to the administration’s four-year review of the Section 301 China tariffs. The questions are separated into three sections and invite views concerning the Section 301 actions at an economy wide level, at a sector/industry level, and at the level of tariff headings. USTR’s comment portal opens on November 15 and will close on January 17, 2023. USTR has not yet announced its intentions with regard to currently-effective Section 301 tariff exclusions which are set to expire by the end of 2022.
On November 3, USTR announced that it will hold in-person conceptual discussions on the U.S.-Taiwan Initiative on 21st-Century Trade on November 8-9, to be led by Assistant U.S. Trade Representative Terry McCartin. Launched in June 2022, the U.S.-Taiwan trade discussions parallel those being held under the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF). The first round of IPEF negotiations will take place in Australia in December.
Contact: Steve Ziehm
In the runoff presidential election in Brazil, former leftist president Lula da Silva narrowly beat the incumbent, Jair Bolsonaro. Although Bolsonaro has not formally conceded the election, a coup attempt appears unlikely as he discouraged his supporters from highly disruptive or violent protests, resulting in the protests losing steam and the transition officially beginning.
President Biden swiftly recognized Lula’s election, promising to cooperate with the president-elect on “climate change, safeguarding food security, promoting inclusion and democracy, and managing regional migration.” Leaders from the European Union also welcomed his election, indicating that Lula’s administration’s stronger environmental commitments could revive the floundering EU-Mercosur free trade agreement. Chinese President Xi congratulated Lula, suggesting that Chinese trade and investment would grow under his administration and that the two presidents would take relations “to a new level.”
Further north in Venezuela, the president of Colombia traveled to Caracas to meet with President Maduro, further demonstrating the shift in Colombian-Venezuelan relations under the Petro administration. The two presidents discussed trade, human rights, and protecting the Amazon rainforest. After the meeting, Venezuela announced that it would rejoin the Andean Community of Nations regional bloc. While the State Department did not condemn the meeting, it “urged Colombia … to advocate for a democratic and prosperous hemisphere… and to hold accountable governments that have violated the democratic rights and the democratic norms.”
Contact: Ethan Knecht
Foreign ministers from the G7 group of countries gathered in Munster, Germany for consultations on the war in Ukraine on November 3 and 4. The ministers announced a coordination mechanism to help Ukraine repair critical energy and water infrastructure. The participants also committed to a fixed price for a sanctions based price cap on Russian oil exports. The fixed price is intended to provide predictability and will be announced before a December 5 entry into force. The attendees also discussed global security issues, including food security, recent destabilizing actions by Iran and North Korea, and Indo-Pacific security.
Separately, Russia destabilized grain markets when it abruptly withdrew from, and then rejoined two days later, the Black Sea grain deal negotiated with Ukraine, Turkey, and the United Nations. The deal allows for the safe export of Ukrainian grain in designated maritime corridors, primarily for shipment to lower and middle income countries.
Contact: Pat Sheehy
- Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) is seeking global support for export controls on China’s advanced semiconductor production. Senior BIS and NSC officials will hold discussions this month with the Netherlands urging the country to restrict the transfer of semiconductor manufacturing goods and technology to China.
- In a preview of increased congressional oversight of BIS, Foreign Affairs Committee senior Republican Michael McCaul (R-TX) asked the Commerce Secretary in a letter to provide licensing data on the latest export control rules that prevent China from accessing high-end semiconductor technologies.
- The Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency released a report on critical threats to U.S. technology on November 3. The report details how China, Russia, and other foreign parties seek to obtain sensitive U.S. technologies through illicit means.
- Ahead of COP 27, the OECD released a report on the increased use of carbon pricing, focused on 71 countries. The State Department released a progress update on the 2022 Climate Adaptation and Resilience Plan (CARP) focused on five long-term vulnerabilities to climate hazards (including workforce mobility, emergency planning, and supply chains and procurement).
- In multiple efforts to promote U.S. agricultural trade, Secretary Vilsack, Senator Grassley, and Representative Kind (D-WI) spoke out against Mexico’s planned ban on GMO corn imports from the United States. Seven House Agriculture Committee members also introduced legislation that doubles funding for two Agricultural Department export promotion programs.
- President Biden announced a decision to remove Burkina Faso as a beneficiary under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) as of January 1, 2023. Citing unconstitutional changes in the government, U.S. Trade Representative KatherineTai noted that USTR will provide benchmarks for a pathway for Burkina Faso to be reinstated to the tariff preference program.
NOTICES, BILLS & HEARINGS
Federal Register Notices
- Commerce/BIS, Materials and Equipment Technical Advisory Committee, November 3
- Commerce/BIS, Emerging Technology Technical Advisory Committee, November 3
- DHS/CBP, AGOA textile certificate of origin, November 1
- EOP/OSTP, Framing the National Nature Assessment, October 31
- ITC, U.S.-Pacific Islands trade and investment, November 3
- State, African and diaspora young leaders forum: U.S.-Africa summit, November 3
- Treasury/CFIUS, Enforcement and penalty guidelines, November 2
- Treasury/OFAC, Russia sanctions designations, November 4
- H.R.9256 (Gottheimer, D-NJ) Would improve U.S.-Israeli efforts to counter attack drones.
- H.R.9250 (Plaskett, D-VI) Would modify IRS source rules to establish territorial tax parity for personal property sales.
- H.R.9244 (Costa, D-CA) Would double funding for two U.S. agriculture export programs.
- H.R.9241 (Banks, R-IN) Would transfer export control authority from Commerce to the Defense Department.
- Alexandra Teitz, Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chief Counsel
- Julie Kozack, IMF Director for Strategic Communications
- Keri Lowry, Millennium Challenge Corporation Chief of Staff
- Neale Mahoney, NEC Senior Policy Advisor for Economic Policy
- Robert McIntosh, Congressman Pete Sessions (R-TX) Chief of Staff
- Sahar Hafeez, NSC Director for International Economics
Want more scoops on personnel moves? Find the most recent Who’s Who here.
- Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo to consult with allies on sanctions against Russia (Paris, London) November 7-9
- UNFCCC COP 27 (Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt), November 7-18
- U.S. midterm elections, November 8
- ASEAN Leaders’ Summit (Phnom Penh), November 10-13
Looking farther ahead? Find the most recent full international events calendar here.