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Petition For The Imposition of Antidumping Duties on Polyester Terephthalate (“PET”) Resin from Brazil, Indonesia, the Republic of Korea, Pakistan, and Taiwan - Grunfeld, Desiderio, Lebowitz, Silverman & Klestadt LLP

I. Type of Action: Antidumping Duty (“AD”): Brazil, Indonesia, the Republic of Korea, Pakistan, and Taiwan.

II. Product: The merchandise covered by this Petition is certain PET resin. "PET" is short for polyethylene terephthalate, a plastic resin that is a form of polyester. PET resin is a polymer that is formed by combining two monomers: mono ethylene glycol ("MEG") and purified terephthalic acid (“PTA"). The PET resin that is the subject of this petition has an intrinsic viscosity (“IV”) of 0.70 or more, but not more than 0.88, deciliters per gram. The merchandise covered by this petition is the same as the merchandise that was the subject of the 2005 and 2016 cases on PET resin.

III. HTS classifications: PET resin that is the subject of this Petition is subject to different classifications under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States ("HTSUS"), depending on when during the proposed period of investigation ("POI") (January 1, 2014 through June 30, 2017) the entry was made. For entries in 2014 through 2016, the following HTS subheading is applicable:

3907.60.00.30 (polyacetals, other polyethers and expoxide resins, in primary forms; polycarbonates, alkyd resins, polyallyl esters and other polyesters, in primary forms: poly(ethylene terephthalate), packaging grade (bottle grade and other, with an intrinsic viscosity of 0.70 or more but not more than 0.88 deciliters per gram)).

Beginning January 1, 2017, the following two HTSUS subheadings are applicable for entries of PET resin:

3907 (polyacetals, other polyethers and expoxide resins, in primary forms; polycarbonates, alkyd resins, polyallyl esters and other polyesters, in primary forms:

3907.61.00.00 Poly (ethylene terephthalate): having a viscosity number of 78 ml/g or higher

3907.69.00.00 Poly (ethylene terephthalate): other

IV. Date of Filing: September 26, 2017

V. Petitioners: DAK Americas LLC, Indorama Ventures USA, Inc., M&G Polymers USA, LLC, and Nan Ya Plastics Corporation, America

VI. Foreign Producers/Exporters: Please contact our office for a list filed with the petition.

VII. US Importers named: Please contact our office for a list filed with the petition.

VIII. Alleged Dumping Margins:

Brazil: 18.76% - 114.84%;
Indonesia: 8.49% - 95.06%;
The Republic of Korea: 58.73% - 103.48%;
Pakistan: 27.69% - 59.92%;
Taiwan: 18.47% - 45.97%;

IX. Comments:

A. Projected date of ITC Preliminary Conference: October 17, 2017.

Please contact our office for a complete projected schedule for the AD investigation.

B. The earliest theoretical date for retroactive suspension of liquidation for the antidumping duty is December 5, 2017;

C. Volume and Value of Imports:

Please contact our office for a summary of the data filed with the petition.

If you have questions regarding how this investigation may impact future imports of scope merchandise, or whether a particular product is within the scope of the investigation, please contact one of our attorneys.


Issuance of Wood Packaging Material Penalty (Updated) - U.S. Customs & Border Protection

Pursuant to U.S. Code of Federal Regulations 7 CFR § 319.40-3 (effective since September 16, 2005), non-exempt wood packaging material (WPM) imported into the United States must have been treated at approved facilities at places of origin to kill harmful timber pests that may be present. The WPM must display a visible, legible, and permanent mark certifying treatment, preferably in at least 2 sides of the article. The mark must be approved under the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) in its International Standards of Phytosanitary Measures (ISPM 15) Regulation of wood packaging material in international trade (https://www.ippc.int/en/publications/640/). Any WPM from foreign origin found to be lacking appropriate IPPC-compliant markings or found to be infested with a timber pest is considered not properly treated to kill timber pests and in violation of the regulation. The responsible party (importer, carrier, or bonded custodian) for the violative WPM must adhere to the Emergency Action Notification stipulations and be responsible for any costs or charges associated with disposition.

The purpose of the WPM requirement is to prevent the introduction of exotic timber pests. Introduced exotic pests lack the natural environmental controls that may be found in their respective native lands to keep them in check. When exotic timber pests go unchecked they can cause widespread tree mortality with detrimental ecological impacts. Additionally, there may be economic impact for the lumber, fruit, and nut industries, as well as the loss of horticultural trees. Eradication efforts can prove to be very expensive and ineffective once an exotic pest is introduced, as is the case with the Emerald Ash Borer which was introduced with infested WPM. Therefore, preventing introduction is critical with these exotic pests.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection is responsible for enforcing the regulation at ports of entry. To motivate WPM compliance, effective November 1, 2017, responsible parties with a documented WPM violation may be issued a penalty under Title 19 United States Code (USC) § 1595a(b) or under 19 USC § 1592. This is a change from the previous published threshold of 5 violations. There will be no yearly reset for calculating repeat violations as each WPM violation may incur a penalty.

As trade industry members, you are encouraged to educate your supply chains about ISPM 15 requirements. Informational material on WPM is available from U.S. Customs and Border Protection.


Publication of an FRN Concerning Changes to the In-Bond Process - U.S. Customs & Border Protection

On Thursday, September 28, 2017, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) published a Federal Register Notice (FRN) with a Final Rule concerning changes to the In-bond process.

Attachment(s): In_Bond_Final_Rule_2017_20495pdf0.pdf


Charitable Donations for Hurricane Maria - U.S. Customs & Border Protection

This memorandum is being issued to provide guidance on the processing of merchandise imported for relief efforts of Hurricane Maria, both for gifts accepted by FEMA via the international assistance system (IAS) concept of operation (CONOPS), and those being imported by U.S. charities (or other private entities) to assist with disaster relief. Under the IAS CONOPS, the importation has been sanctioned by the State Department as an approved shipment after FEMA exercises its gift acceptance authority, and the goods are eligible to be entered without the payment of duty or taxes pursuant to 19 U.S.C. 1322(b) or 19 U.S.C. 1318(b)(2). The requirement for advanced electronic filing of cargo information may be waived for these shipments. For IAS goods, upon arrival at a port, a paper cargo manifest must be provided by the arriving carrier and screened by the port for high-risk factors in accordance with CBP policy. Also, arriving foreign shipments processed under these guidelines must be logged and tracked locally by the port in accordance with existing policies to document the following:

Port of Entry
Importer
Consignee
Description of Goods
Quantity
Country of Origin of the Goods
Destination of the Goods
Certification that the Goods were Approved for Importation under the IAS

Shipments of emergency relief supplies, identified by CBP as having been accepted by the United States through the State Department, will be allowed to proceed without FDA review or PN data being submitted. FDA will attempt to obtain the information they require regarding such shipments in advance of arrival either through CBP or other means and will distribute this information to their field personnel as soon as possible.

CBP may not remit the duty on the entry of any goods imported for disaster relief by a private group or individual pursuant to 19 U.S.C. 1322(b), unless the recipient is a recognized tax-exempt charitable organization. These private groups or individuals must provide a letter from the charity, on the charity’s letterhead, with the charity’s Internal Revenue Service (IRS) number(s), and a statement that they are willing to accept the imported goods.

To determine if a charitable organization is in fact an established and eligible charity, CBP personnel may verify an organization’s tax-exempt status on the IRS list web site at www.irs.gov/charities, under subheading, “Search for Charities.” The organizations that qualify as tax-exempt charities are listed in the Exempt Organizations Select Check electronic search tool. However, not all organizations eligible for tax-free deductions may be listed in the publication. If the charitable organization is not found, CBP personnel may verify an organization’s tax-exempt status and eligibility to receive tax-deductible charitable contributions by directly calling the IRS at 1-877-829-5500.

This method of verification is only for U.S. charitable organizations and may not contain information on international relief organizations. For example, the charity Oxfam has tax exempt status under 26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3) and appears on the IRS list, while Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) does not appear on the list, but nevertheless appears to have tax exempt status 26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3) status in the United States. In any case, the burden is on the importer to show that the recipient of the goods is an established charitable organization. This information is applicable to all charitable organizations, including religious organizations with 26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3) status.

In all cases where the imported merchandise to be processed under 19 U.S.C. 1322(b), is known to have other government agency requirements, every effort should be made to advise the responsible agency in order to provide them the ability to conduct inspections and make their own admissibility determinations based on their mission needs and requirements.

Any merchandise that does not meet the above criteria for the IAS CONOPS or donations to charities can still be entered under established entry procedures.

For questions about State Department approval for the admissibility of foreign goods for disaster relief, please contact Ms. Carol Chan, USAID, Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) at c.chan@usaid.gov or (202) 712-0841 or ofdainquiries@ofda.gov.

Any questions or concerns regarding this guidance should be addressed to Mr. Randy Mitchell, Director, Commercial Operations Revenue Entry Division, at otentrysummary@cbp.dhs.gov.


USITC:  News Releases, Documents and Announcement - International Trade Administration

A federal judge ordered a New Jersey company that sold injectable skin whitening and other beauty products to stop selling and recall some of its products because they are unapproved new drugs that may be unsafe, putting consumers at risk.

U.S. District Judge Peter G. Sheridan entered a consent decree of permanent injunction today between the United States and Flawless Beauty LLC of Ocean Township and Asbury Park, New Jersey, the company’s co-owners, Jack H. Gindi and Susana B. Boleche, and an affiliated company owned by Mr. Gindi, RDG Imports LLC.

According to the complaint for permanent injunction, which the U.S. Department of Justice filed on the FDA’s behalf, Flawless Beauty sold unapproved and improperly labeled (misbranded) drugs which present serious public health risks, particularly purportedly sterile injectable skin whitening drug products. Intravenous and intramuscular administration of these unapproved drugs, for which sterility cannot be assured, could result in serious health risks. These risks include nerve or blood vessel damage, infection or toxic systemic reactions. The company also sold several products that are labeled to contain human placenta, which can result in serious illness.

Some of the products sold by Flawless Beauty also implied FDA approval or endorsement, which the company did not have.

“Despite repeated warnings, Flawless Beauty continued to put patients at risk by selling potentially dangerous and unproven treatments to consumers,” said Donald D. Ashley, J.D., director of the Office of Compliance in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “We urge consumers to beware of these and other unproven drug products that use deceptive marketing tactics to sell their unsafe products.”

The consent decree prohibits Flawless Beauty, RDG Imports and its owners from directly or indirectly importing, manufacturing and/or distributing any drug products until they comply with the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act).

Under the consent decree, the company has 20 days to recall all ampules or lyophilized vials, including those sold as part of whitening kits, and all injectable products. These include products sold under the Relumins, Tatiomax, TP Drug Laboratories, Laennec, Saluta, Tationil and Laroscorbine brands, among others.

Additionally, under the consent decree, Flawless Beauty, RDG Imports and its owners must also hire an expert to review their drug products and receive written permission from the FDA before they can resume distributing drugs. The company and its owners will be assessed monetary damages if they fail to meet any of the terms of the consent decree, the FD&C Act or applicable regulations.

Federal law requires a new drug to undergo the FDA drug approval process to be legally marketed in the United States. The drug approval system is designed to prevent patients from being exposed to the risks associated with potentially unsafe, ineffective and poor quality drugs. The FDA has not approved any injectable drugs for skin whitening or lightening.

In September 2014, U.S. Marshals seized various unapproved and improperly labeled drug products sold and distributed by Flawless Beauty at the request of the FDA, including numerous injectable skin whitening products such as the Relumins Advanced Glutathione kits and Tatiomax Glutathione Collagen Whitening kits. Despite this seizure action, the company and its owners continued marketing and distributing unapproved drugs, which prompted federal authorities to seek further enforcement action.

The FDA urges health care professionals and consumers to report any adverse events related to products sold by Flawless Beauty to its MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program by:

•Completing and submitting the report online at MedWatch online voluntary reporting form; or
•Downloading and completing the form, then submitting it via fax at 1-800-FDA-0178.

The FDA, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, protects the public health by assuring the safety, effectiveness, and security of human and veterinary drugs, vaccines and other biological products for human use, and medical devices. The agency also is responsible for the safety and security of our nation’s food supply, cosmetics, dietary supplements, products that give off electronic radiation, and for regulating tobacco products.


The Office of the United States Trade Representative releases President Trump's 2017 Trade Policy Agenda  - U.S. Trade Representative

The new Trade Agenda reinforces the Administration’s commitment to defend American interests through the promotion of truly free and fair trade.

Washington, D.C. – Today, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative ("USTR") released President Trump's 2017 Trade Policy Agenda, as required by Congress.

The 2017 Agenda outlines the new Administration’s four trade priorities: promoting U.S. sovereignty, enforcing U.S. trade laws, leveraging American economic strength to expand our goods and services exports, and protecting U.S. intellectual property rights.

USTR leads development and implementation of the President’s Trade Policy Agenda, which it provides with the Annual Report on trade developments. To read both, please click here
 
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