Last week a decision was released in a dispute between the US and Canada related to Canada’s dairy tariff-rate quotas (TRQ) under the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). The dispute settlement panel found that certain Canadian restrictions on use of the TRQs are in violations of its obligations under the free trade agreement. Specifically, the Panel found that Canada has breached its USMCA Article 3.A.2.11(b) commitments by “reserving TRQ pools exclusively for the use of processors.”

Continue Reading USMCA Panel Announces Win for US in Dairy TRQ Dispute with Canada

Husch Blackwell’s third-annual international trade law year-in-review report provides a detailed look at how 2021 played out and takes a peek at how 2022 might develop. As companies begin to strategize on what a second year of the Biden administration will bring, we hope the framework presented in our report will help your business maximize potential cost savings and minimize potential risks as enforcement activity continues to rise and supply chains remain under pressure well into the coming year.

Continue Reading Download Report | International Trade Law: 2021 Year in Review & Outlook for 2022

On December 23, 2021 President Biden signed H.R. 6256, wide-reaching legislation aimed at preventing the importation of goods “mined, produced or manufactured wholly or in part with forced labor” from China, in particular the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (the “XUAR”).  See Text – H.R.6256 – 117th Congress (2021-2022): To ensure that goods made with forced labor in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China do not enter the United States market, and for other purposes. | Congress.gov | Library of Congress.  The bill specifically references cotton, tomatoes and polysilicon, but in fact covers all types of products as well as manufacturers and even companies involved in the recruitment and transport of workers.
Continue Reading President Biden Signs Wide-Reaching Legislation Targeting Goods Allegedly Involving Forced Labor from China

On October 31, 2021, the Secretary of Commerce and United States Trade Representative released a statement confirming that the United States and the European Union (EU) have come to an agreement (Agreement) that will modify the current section 232 tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.
Continue Reading United States Set to Rollback Existing Section 232 Tariffs on Steel and Aluminum from the European Union

On Saturday, the United States and the European Union reached an agreement on section 232 duties being imposed because of global steel and aluminum excess capacity concerns.  The trading partners have agreed that the U.S. will adjust tariffs on steel and aluminum to allow elimination of certain U.S. section 232 duties, and the EU will suspend its retaliatory tariffs.
Continue Reading U.S.-EU Make a Deal on Steel and Aluminum Tariffs

With the support of the Executive Directors of The Port of Los Angeles (“Port of L.A.”) and the Port of Long Beach, and the President of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, President Biden announced on Wednesday October 13, 2021, after week of negotiations, that the Port of L.A. has agreed to begin operating 24/7. The Port of L.A. will join the Port of Long Beach, which has been running 24/7 for the past several weeks. Together, 40% of the containers imported to the United States go through these two ports.
Continue Reading Biden Administration Comes to Agreement with Private Companies and Unions to Begin Operating the Port of Los Angeles 24/7

On October 4, 2021, Ambassador Katherine Tai, the United States Trade Representative, addressed the state of U.S.- China trade relations and the upcoming plans for the Biden Administration to improve foreign trade policy. Since taking office in January, the Administration has spent time reviewing the trade policies put in place under the Trump Administration.  There has been little movement until now as to the stance the Biden Administration would take, which created uncertainty regarding U.S. trade policy with China. Speculation grew as many questioned what would happen with the tariffs imposed on Chinese imports (under Section 301), how the administration would address the shortcomings of the “Phase 1” deal, and whether the product exclusion process would be re-instated.

Continue Reading Biden Administration Shows Signs of Addressing China Trade Wars

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has finalized a rule intending to reduce the production and consumption of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in the United States by enforcing a cap and
Continue Reading EPA Issues Final Rule to Phase Down HFCs as White House Announces Measures to Prevent Illegal Imports

Don’t Forget the Chassis in the Chase for the Cure.

A new level of frustration has arisen from the ocean shipper ranks during this “post-COVID” period. Shipments from Asia to the U.S. are experiencing extreme difficulties in getting their cargo delivered, mainly due to the acute shortage of chassis to effect delivery of their containers on the U.S. side. The painful example of this is the BNSF current experience with Lot W. Aside from the impact to the importer in not being able to access its cargo and experiencing serious damage to its business, it is also likely to face serious demurrage charges from the ocean carrier. This is on top of having just experienced a quadrupling (or more) of the base FAK per container rates, and the ocean carrier choices to leave agricultural commodities sitting at West Coast U.S. ports, favoring the shipment of empty containers opting to position equipment for the lucrative Asia to U.S. trade.


Continue Reading The Dynamic of the Chassis Quandary Today in Ocean Shipping in the United States