Here is a recap of the latest customs and international trade news:    

 Customs and Border Protection (CBP)    

  • Memphis CBP, HSI repatriates precious cultural artifacts to Mexico. 
  • CBP accused of ignoring Ivory Coast cocoa ban petition – child welfare advocates filed a federal lawsuit asking a judge to force the Biden administration to block imports of cocoa harvested by children in West Africa that can end up in America’s most popular chocolate desserts and candies. 
  • CBP opens October 2023 Customs Broker License Exam registration. 
  • CBP announces trade portals data freeze – the Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (CTPAT) and the Trade Compliance (TC) program Portals will “enter into a data freeze window” from Sept. 16-30. During this time, there will be no access to either Portal for trade users. 

World Trade Organization (WTO) 

  • WTO rejects China’s Trump-era tariffs against imports from U.S. – In a ruling published this week, the WTO said China violated its fundamental trade commitments when it imposed tariffs on $2.4 billion worth of US products in retaliation for former President Donald Trump’s steel and aluminum duties. 


  • White House releases final ‘buy America’ guidance – The Biden-⁠Harris Administration releases final guidance to bolster American-made goods in federal infrastructure projects. 


  • U.S. Representatives Jennifer Wexton (D-VA) and Carlos A. Giménez (R-FL) introduced bipartisan legislation to crack down on imports sourced from Uyghur Forced Labor. 

 U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) 

  • USDA proposes significant increase in AQI user fees. APHIS published a proposed rule outlining proposed changes to its user fees charged for certain Agricultural Quarantine and Inspection (AQI) services. In association with this proposed rule, APHIS will host six stakeholder webinars for stakeholders impacted by each fee. 
  • USDA organics primer released – The USDA posted new resources to assist trade in complying with the new Organics certification requirements that will take effect in March 2024. The primer, called Strengthening Organic Enforcement—Final Primers, clarifies who needs to be certified and provides details about submitting the electronic import certification at entry.

Department of Commerce  

  • Commerce issues a business advisory for South Sudan – the Advisory highlights the growing reputational and financial risks to American businesses and individuals conducting business with companies that have significant ties to South Sudan’s extended transitional government. 
  • Commerce and USTR to hold stakeholder IPEF listening sessions for fifth negotiating round. 
  • Finished carbon steel flanges from India: Preliminary results of countervailing duty administrative review. 
  • Certain hot-rolled steel flat products from the Republic of Korea: Final results of antidumping duty administrative review and final determination. 

Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) 

  • Cindy Hennigan named Deputy Managing Director – Ms. Hennigan will serve as the operating director for the Commission’s administrative functions and as the primary technical advisor to the Managing Director.  

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)     

  • OFAC announces settlement agreement with Construction Specialties, Inc. 
    • The apparent violations involved the company’s purchase and reexportation of commercial building products of U.S. origin to Iran. The matter was settled for $660,594. 
  • OFAC to retire PIP, DEL, and SDALL.ZIP file formats of the sanctions list on or about the week of September 18, 2023. 
  • Counter terrorism designations; North Korea designations. 
  • Counter terrorism designation update; Iran-related designation update.

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