Customs and Trade Law Weekly Snapshot
Here is a recap of the latest customs and international trade law news:
Customs Valuation is a procedure to determine the customs value of imported goods. The customs value is essential to calculate the total duty to be paid on an imported good. As part of its agreement with the World Trade Organization (“WTO”), the U.S. is part of an internationally standardized system of valuing imports. This standardized system allows for CBP to protect revenue, ensure reasonable care from importers, and accurately calculate Census trade statistics. Accordingly, it is critical to declare the value of importations accurately and compliantly.
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) valuation methodology (as well as a summary of relevant Customs rulings) are described in detail in the Valuation Encyclopedia (i.e., the best resource on valuation inquiries). CBP permits merchandise to be valued according to one of the six valuation methods listed below. The methods are applied sequentially from first to last until an applicable value is determined. If the first method does not apply, the importer must then evaluate the second, and so on, until an appropriate method applies. The only exception to this sequential evaluation requirement is when evaluating between deductive value and computed value – an importer may choose to use the computed value before the deductive value.
Methods of Valuation:
Celebrate the summer season with two light hearted webinars on International Trade. Diaz Trade Law invites the trade community to two FREE webinars; space is limited – register today! Laugh with us at the Humor in International Trade webinar and learn insightful facts about the impact of international trade on American history during The First Laws — History of Customs and Revenue Law. More information about each webinar is provided below:
Can We Find Humor in International Trade? – July 14, 2021 at 12:00 PM ET
This one-hour webinar describes humor in trade. International Trade is a serious subject, but within it, bits of humor can be found. Register today to hear from this experienced duo and discover many of the oddities and idiosyncrasies prevalent in our modern-day international trade system.
President and Founder of Diaz Trade Law, Jennifer (Jen) Diaz is a Chambers ranked, Board Certified International Attorney specializing in customs and international trade.
Exporting is a Privilege, Not a Right
Over 95% of the world’s consumers are outside of the United States. Opportunities abound for U.S. companies that export. However, exporting is a privilege and not a right. U.S. exporters have an important responsibility to adhere to U.S. export control laws, including the Export Administration Regulations (“EAR”), the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (“ITAR”) the Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) sanctions laws, and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”). Violations of export control laws carry hefty civil and criminal penalties. Exporters can pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in penalties, lose export privileges, and even be imprisoned for violations of U.S. export control laws.
Background on Securing Information Technology & Communications Supply Chains
Cuba Designated a State Sponsor of Terror
The U.S. State Department designated Cuba a State Sponsor of Terrorism (“SST”) on January 11, 2021. Countries are designated on the SST list when they are determined by the U.S. Secretary of State to have repeatedly provided support for acts of international terrorism.
The four main categories of sanctions resulting from designation can include restrictions on U.S. foreign assistance; a ban on defense exports and sales; certain controls over exports of dual use items; and miscellaneous financial and other restrictions. Here, the January 11 re-designation of Cuba on the SST subjects Cuba to:
Largest FCPA Settlement to Date
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) announced in October that Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (“Goldman Sachs”) agreed to pay $2.9 billion as part of a settlement agreement. The settlement was a result of the agencies’ enforcement action after they learned that Goldman Sachs had allegedly paid $1.6 billion in bribes to officials in Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates (“UAE”) to secure its position as the underwriter of $6.5 billion in three bond deals with 1Malaysia Development Berhad. The settlement constitutes the largest Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) settlement ever recorded.