Comment Now – CBP Proposed Rule on Country of Origin Determination for Imports under USMCA

Background on CBP Country of Origin Determination and USMCA

All merchandise of foreign origin imported into the United States (U.S.) must generally be marked with its country of origin, and it is subject to a country of origin (COO) determination by CBP. The country of origin of imported goods may be used as a factor to determine eligibility for preferential trade treatment under a free trade agreement.

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Using WROs to Fight Forced Labor

Forced Labor is the third most lucrative illicit trade, behind only drugs and weapons, and has an annual trade value of roughly $150 Billion. Right now, over 40 million people around the world are victims of some type of forced labor, including modern slavery, human trafficking, etc.

Thankfully, U.S. Customs and Border Protection has been working to curb this inhumane practice.

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What You Missed at CBP’s Virtual Trade Week

From September 8-11, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) held its first virtual trade week. Over the course of the event, CBP held an action-packed series of webinars on the following topics:

  • United States-Mexico-Canada-Agreement (USMCA)
  • Forced Labor
  • Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (CTPAT)
  • E-Commerce
  • 21st Century Customs Framework (21CCF)

In the midst of this global pandemic and the vast challenges that (we are all navigating) the trade community faces, by us coming together in this way collective commitment to continue our persistent and ongoing dialogue about the most pressing issue facing.  CBP believes that improving and delivering effective transparency is an essential element to enhancing trust, and trust is essential to strengthening partnerships and getting things done for your business to thrive and trade community to succeed.

Below are summaries of each of the sessions. Have questions on them? Contact DTL at info@diaztradelaw.com.

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USMCA Import Considerations for Practitioners

Diaz Trade Law is enthusiastic to announce that another one of their articles, “USMCA Import Considerations for Practitioners,” was published by Bloomberg Law! Below is the article reproduced with permission for your reading pleasure. We’d love to hear your feedback!

You can read the article here, by clicking USMCA Import Considerations for Practitioners (where you’ll have the ability to access all of the great hyperlinks) you cannot click on below.

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Why all the guesswork?

There are so many questions, with an even greater amount of potential answers when importing goods into the United States.  What is the HTS classification? Are the product labels marked correctly for entry?  What is the product’s country of origin?  Should the product receive NAFTA, DR-CAFTA, GSP or some other duty-free treatment?  What is more important is that the answers to these questions mean real money!  For example, if the product you are importing is eligible for duty-free treatment, it could mean the difference between paying a double-digit tariff versus none at all.

Answering these questions is not always so simple, and are often subject to interpretation.  An importer could assume that their own guesses are correct, but, taking that leap places in jeopardy the profitability of the venture, especially as profit margins become ever so tight.  What’s worse is that a wrong guess could potentially subject the company to fines if Customs and Border Protection (CBP) simply does not agree with the interpretation you have used in the past. CBP statute of limitations is five years – that translates into a multitude of entries potentially subjected to CBP fines if you have been guessing wrong.

How do you eliminate the guesswork? Submit a Binding Ruling Request!  Put simply, a Binding Ruling Request is an official request to CBP that includes relevant information, and often a sample of the product, for CBP to review and respond as to the following:

(1)          HTS Classification
(2)          Marking/Labels Ruling
(3)          Country of Origin Determination
(4)          Valuation Rulings
(5)          Applicability of […]

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