On May 22, 2024, the United States Trade Representative (“USTR”) published details regarding proposed increases in Section 301 tariffs on imports from China following the results of its statutorily required four-year review of the Section 301 tariff actions. (For additional background on the Section 301 investigation and relevant Chinese practices, please see one of our earlier Section 301 alerts).Continue Reading USTR Publishes Details of Section 301 Tariff Increases, Requests Comments

On August 9, 2023, the Biden administration issued a much-anticipated Executive Order establishing a new regime to limit certain U.S. investments in key Chinese technology sectors to prevent the financing of Chinese military advancement. The order, once implemented via regulation, will prohibit U.S. persons from investing in, or engaging in certain other transactions with, Chinese companies engaged in specified conduct involving semiconductors and microelectronics, quantum information technologies, and artificial intelligence. The regulations will likely come into force in 2024 after multiple rounds of public comment, including an initial 45-day comment period that is now underway on an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking (“ANPRM”) issued by the U.S. Department of the Treasury (“Treasury”).

The regulations will prohibit some investments altogether, while others will be subject only to official notification requirements. Treasury, which will implement and enforce the restrictions, stated that it anticipates exempting “certain transactions, including potentially those in publicly traded instruments and intracompany transfers from U.S. parents to subsidiaries.”Continue Reading Amid Growing Trade Tensions, U.S. Imposes Unprecedented Restrictions on Outbound Investments to China

On October 12, 2022, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative announced it would be seeking public comments regarding the effectiveness of the actions related to the Section 301 investigation of China’s Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation.  The two specific actions under review are the imposition of additional tariffs under Section 301 on products on List 1 and List 2 (covering $34 billion and $16 million in imports as of 2018, respectively), which were subsequently modified by the imposition of List 3 and List 4A (totaling $325 billion in imports as of 2018).  This notice marks the next step in the USTR’s “review of necessity,” a statutory-mandated four-year review process.  A portal for submitting these comments will open on November 15, 2022, with a deadline of January 17, 2023.
Continue Reading USTR Announces Next Steps in Statutory Four-Year Review of China 301 Tariffs

Since the beginning of the Biden Administration, and particularly since earlier in 2021, U.S. companies and importers have been looking forward to the prospect of a reduction in the tariffs originally imposed in 2018 and 2019 following the Section 301 investigation against China or, at a minimum, a resumption of the exclusion process that was largely suspended in 2020 aside from extensions in limited circumstances.  While several avenues for the elimination or reduction of Section 301 duties have presented themselves, to date, none have been adopted.  Nevertheless, the coming months may offer several opportunities for U.S. companies interested in reducing their Section 301 duty liability to advocate for relief.
Continue Reading Section 301 Duties on Imports from China: Current Status of Prospects for Relief

The Office of the United States Trade Representative (“USTR”) has recently initiated a statutory four-year review of the two actions taken under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended, in the investigation of China’s Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation.  The two specific actions under review are the imposition of additional tariffs under Section 301 on products on List 1(covering $34 billion in imports as of 2018) and List 2 ($16 million in imports), which were subsequently modified by the imposition of List 3 and List 4A.

This “review of necessity” is being conducted pursuant to 19 U.S.C. § 2417(c), which obligates USTR to revoke any action taken under Section 301 after four years unless parties that benefit from that action requests its continuation.  If continuation is requested, USTR is then required to evaluate the “effectiveness in achieving the objectives of Section 301” and the “effects of such actions on the United States economy, including consumers” for any action taken under Section 301.Continue Reading USTR Starts “Review of Necessity” of Section 301 Tariffs

The Final Rule published by the Department of Commerce (“Department”) on Monday, September 20, 2021, makes certain modifications to the Department’s regulations on new shipper reviews of antidumping and countervailing duty order. Among other changes, the new regulations increase the burden for parties requesting new shipper reviews by requiring more documentation supporting the sales under review and by requiring certifications from unaffiliated customers.  These changes are intended to enhance the Department’s ability to assess whether new shipper review requests are based on “bona fide” sales.  Several of the more burdensome requirements contained in the proposed version of the rule, issued last August, did not ultimately survive the notice and comment process.  Even so, the additional requirements imposed by this regulatory amendment will likely make it more difficult for parties to seek and obtain new shipper reviews, and could give the Department greater leeway in rejecting such requests.

Provided for by Section 751(a)(2)(B) of the Act, a new shipper review allows a foreign exporter or producer that did not export subject merchandise to the United States during the period of the original antidumping (AD) or countervailing duty (CVD) investigation, and is not affiliated with an exporter or producer that did export, an opportunity to obtain its own dumping or countervailing duty margin after it makes its first U.S. sale on an expedited basis.  Regulations for new shipper reviews are outlined in 19 CFR Section 351.214.Continue Reading Revisions to the Department of Commerce’s Antidumping / Countervailing Duty Regulations: New Shipper Reviews