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Best PracticesCBPCustoms ExpertEnforcementExportForced LaborImportImport AlertInternational BusinessInternational LawInternational TradePre-complianceTrade WarU.S.CustomsXinjiang

CBP Issues WRO on Cotton, Tomato, & Downstream Products Made in Xinjiang

posted by Jennifer Diaz February 18, 2021 0 comments

The United States has been increasing its efforts to combat forced labor around the world. During the Trump Administration’s final weeks, the United States not only banned the importation of Chinese Cotton, Tomatoes, among other products, but also explicitly recognized the situation in Xinjiang as a Genocide.

Importers not adequately auditing their supply chains for use of forced labor are at risk of administrative and criminal enforcement. Imported merchandise produced with forced labor is subject to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) enforcement. Such enforcement includes U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) right to detain, exclude, and/or seize imported goods and Homeland Security Investigation’s potential criminal investigation. China is not only the United States’ number one trading partner but also happens to be the world’s biggest forced labor violator.

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Best PracticesCBPCOVID-19Customs ExpertEnforcementExportFDA IssuesImportImport AlertInternational BusinessInternational LawInternational TradeMexicoSeizuresSupply ChainU.S.Customs

FDA Import Alert on Mexican Hand Sanitizer

posted by Jennifer Diaz February 4, 2021 0 comments

For the first time in history, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a countrywide import alert for any category of drug product. Specifically, on January 26, 2021, the FDA announced that it will Take Action to Place All Alcohol-Based Hand Sanitizers from Mexico on Import Alert to Help Prevent Entry of Violative and Potentially Dangerous Products into U.S., Protect U.S. Consumers. FDA singled out importations of hand sanitizers from Mexico due to the frequent use of methanol.

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Best PracticesCustoms ExpertEnforcementExportImportImport AlertInternational BusinessInternational LawInternational TradePre-complianceTrade War

FTC issues a Record Breaking $1.2 Million Penalty

posted by Jennifer Diaz January 26, 2021 0 comments

Co-Authored by Denise Calle

Chemence Inc., a glue maker, is once again in a sticky situation with The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for allegedly making deceptive claims that its products are made in the United States. In a proposed Consent Order, Chemence agreed to pay $1.2 million for its violation of the FTC Act for violating a 2016 federal court order to cease deceptive marketing tactics, as well as mandated an annual compliance report. The FTC now seeks Public Comment on the proposed consent agreement. The comment period closes on February 8, 2021. Thereafter, FTC will decide whether it should withdraw from the agreement or make it final and force Chemence to pay the $1.2 million penalty.

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A Year in Review!

posted by Jennifer Diaz December 23, 2020 0 comments

2020 has been a difficult year filled with immense challenge and change (to say the least). From all of us at Diaz Trade Law, we are incredibly thankful and grateful for your support. Despite a pandemic, Diaz Trade Law still managed to save our clients MILLIONS of dollars in 2020. It is with great joy that we finish off 2020 filled with numerous achievements and accomplishments. We look forward to assisting you in what we envision will be a better and brighter 2021!

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Best PracticesChinaChina Trade WarCustoms BrokersCustoms ExpertElection 2020EnforcementEventsExportForced LaborImportImport AlertInternational BusinessInternational LawInternational TradeU.S.Customs

Catch Up on Diaz Trade Law’s Top Blogs From 2020!

posted by Jennifer Diaz December 23, 2020 0 comments

 

We want to make sure you stay up to date with the hottest trade blogs from 2020. Below is a summary of what you missed by category. Enjoy!

 

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Best PracticesCustoms ExpertDOLEnforcementEventsExportImportImport AlertInternational BusinessInternational LawInternational TradeLVCTrade War

USMCA Comment Opportunity – Due Dec. 31

posted by Jennifer Diaz December 15, 2020 0 comments

Co-Authored by Sharath Patil

USMCA Background

The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (“USMCA”) is a free trade agreement that replaced the North American Free Trade Agreement (“NAFTA”) and entered into force on July 1, 2020. The USMCA enjoyed significant bipartisan support and was widely considered a successful effort at “modernizing” NAFTA.

From a labor perspective, the USMCA contains much stronger provisions than its predecessor. Rather than comprising enforceable labor provisions, NAFTA was accompanied by a labor side agreement which only listed guiding principles pertaining to workers’ rights. On the other hand, the USMCA comprises an enforceable chapter dedicated to labor containing strong provisions in favor of workers rights.

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Best PracticesCustoms ExpertEnforcementExportImportImport AlertInternational BusinessInternational LawInternational TradeU.S.Customs

Due to Pandemic, BIS Providing Six-Month Export License Extensions

posted by Jennifer Diaz November 24, 2020 0 comments

Co-Authored by Sharath Patil

BIS’ Announcement

Last month, the U.S. Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry & Security (“BIS”) announced that it is providing six-month extensions for export license applications due to economic difficulties associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result of this announcement, BIS is permitting exporters to request six-month validity period extensions for licenses due to expire on or before December 31, 2020. BIS accepts all submission requests in one central electronic mailbox: LicenseExtensionRequest@bis.doc.gov. When a party submits a license extension request, BIS will review the original license and (in most cases), extend the validity of the license by six months. BIS estimates that the majority of extension validity requests will be processed and approved within two to three business days. Acting Under Secretary for Industry and Security Corden Hull said, “The streamlined process will help ensure that exporters with licenses due to expire on or before the end of 2020, who may not have been able to ship orders due to resource constraints during the pandemic, have the opportunity to benefit fully from the authorizations granted on their licenses.”

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Best PracticesCustoms ExpertDHSEnforcementExportImportImport AlertInternational BusinessInternational LawInternational TradeOECDTrade WarU.S.Customs

President Calls for Greater Enforcement Against Counterfeit Imports

posted by Jennifer Diaz November 5, 2020 1 Comment

Co-Authored by Sharath Patil

What Happened

On October 13, 2020, President Trump issued a Presidential Memorandum on stopping counterfeit trafficking on e-commerce platforms. The memorandum called for U.S. Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) to “impose the maximum fines and civil penalties permitted by law on any e-commerce platform that directs, assists with, or is in any way concerned in the importation into the United States of counterfeit goods.” Furthermore, the memorandum also called for:

  • CBP to continue seizing counterfeit goods imported into the United States in connection with e-commerce transactions
  • Congress to pass laws that clarify and strengthen the president’s authority and increase its resources to address e-commerce-linked counterfeit trafficking
  • The U.S. Attorney General to develop a legislative proposal to promote the policy objectives of the memorandum within 120 of its publication

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Best PracticesBISChinaChina Trade WarCustoms ExpertEnforcementExportImportImport AlertInternational LawInternational TradeInternational TravelTrade WarU.S.Customs

BIS Expands Export Restrictions Targeting China’s Largest Chipmaker

posted by Jennifer Diaz October 27, 2020 2 Comments

Co-Authored by Sharath Patil

Last week, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry & Security (“BIS”) informed some U.S. semiconductor manufacturers via a confidential letter that they would require export licenses before exporting certain products to China’s largest semiconductor manufacturer, Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (“SMIC”). Although the letter is not available for public view, a September 28, 2020 Wall Street Journal article that broke the story said that the Commerce Department was concerned about high risks of diversion to a military end use. This additional export license requirement is part of a broader pattern of increased export restrictions, particularly to China.

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Best PracticesCMA GCMCustoms ExpertEnforcementExportIMOImportImport AlertInternational BusinessInternational LawInternational TradeTrade WarU.S.Customs

Maritime Industry Rocked by Cyber Attacks

posted by Jennifer Diaz October 20, 2020 1 Comment

Co-Authored by Sharath Patil

The maritime industry has been rocked by a string of cyber-attacks in recent weeks. Two of the most severe incidents involved the United Nation’s shipping agency, the International Maritime Organization (“IMO”), and the French shipping company CMA GCM S.A. (“CMA GCM”). These attacks remind the shipping industry about the dangers of such attacks and the importance of cybersecurity compliance. From a trade and customs perspective, such incidents trigger post incident analysis and other measures as part of the U.S. Customs & Border Protection’s (“CBP”) Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism Minimum Security Criteria. We will discuss two of the most severe cyber-attack incidents in recent weeks below and then discuss the trade and customs implications of such attacks.

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