GSP Expiration and Renewal
The Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), which allowed for duty free treatment of goods from specific countries, expired at the end of 2020. This is not the first lapse. In the past (after the agreement is renewed), Post Summary Corrections could be filed on entries in order to obtain a duty refund for those goods which entered the US during the gap period. Importers who utilize GSP should continue to claim it on their US Customs entries to ensure they have good records, should refunds be available again.
USTR’s Vietnam Investigation
The USTR’s investigation continues on currency manipulation and illegal timber imports into Vietnam. If findings are substantiated, tariffs could be implemented in a swift manner. These would be similar to Section 301 tariffs many importers faced on goods with Country of Origin China – although we do not yet know which products would be impacted or the additional duty percentage.
The timing of tariff implementation will be determined, in part, by the mechanism used to take action. If currency manipulation is validated, it is likely those findings would be announced through Executive Order – which allows for tariffs to go in to effect much more quickly vs. a USTR regulatory register.
Other Government Agency Updates
The US Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), has announced additional reporting requirements for specific commodities starting Jan 25. A series of webinars has been issued outlining the new information which will be required to be filed at the time of US Customs entry. It is important for importers to be aware of the changes and work with their customs broker to ensure they have all the required data points.
The educational webinars can be found HERE.
We have a team of experts on staff who would be happy to help you navigate the complexities of these issues. Please contact Ashley Coxey, National Director of Business Development, Customs Brokerage or your Laufer representative for more information on any topic discussed in this week’s market letter.