Governmental Notices and Information for January 19 through 25, 2019

Due to the lapse in Appropriations for Fiscal Year 2019, many federal offices are closed or not updating their websites. Nonetheless, private sources assist us in accessing the following information / notices, which may be of interest to our members and the trade:

Legislation: Rep. Sean Duffy Introduces the U.S. Reciprocal Trade Act, a bill that would give president ability to raise tariffs;

Customs and Border Protection: CBP official says that the government shutdown won’t stop CBP from meeting its deadline for phasing out old “core” drawback processes on February 24th; however, the shutdown seems to be impacting other aspects of CBP’s work: CBP’s Disclosure Branch isn’t sending out emails confirming receipt of importers’ requests for an extension of “confidential treatment.” (per § 103.31(d)(1) and (d)(2) of the Customs Regulations, importers may request an exemption from public disclosure of information appearing on inward and outward vessel manifests in connection with its shipments at all ports of entry); included in CBP’s recently posted messages is CSMS 19-000016 Delays In The Processing Of Commercial User Fee Payments;

FDA Recalls Market Withdrawals, & Safety Alerts;

Courts: A recent Court of International Trade (CIT) case suggests that importers should verify their UL Marks – minor differences from products already registered with UL require new products to be registered even if there are only superficial differences, according to the CIT;

The CIT recently ordered an importer to pay more than $500,000 in penalties and unpaid duties for misclassifying goods that should have been subject to antidumping and countervailing duties. The importer allegedly imported wire hangers and polyethylene retail carrier bags from China under the wrong tariff classifications, then failed to defend itself in court against the penalty action;

Three steel importers recently filed a new lawsuit at the Court of International Trade alleging that an increase in Section 232 tariffs on steel products from Turkey to 50 percent is unconstitutional and violates statutory requirements. In a complaint filed January 17th, MedTrade, Transpacific Steel and A.G. Royce Metal Marketing (dba Concrete Reinforcing Products) seek a court order stopping implementation of the tariff increase and refunding any duties collected above the 25 percent applicable to other countries;

E U:  The EU has recently amended its ‘Food Contact Plastics’ Regulation;

California: latest 60 Day Notices on items such as, but not limited to, certain Plastic Soap Holder with Suction Cup, mugs with exterior decorations, Plastic Exercise Balls and a Cosmetic Tools Set; and,

Canada: latest Antidumping and Consumer Alert & Recall notices.

Members wishing to learn more about any of these items are encouraged to review details on the Gemini Member Site, or to contact the Gemini team.