Forced Labor Rebuttable Presumption Takes Effect on June 21, 2022 - Are you Ready? - Grunfeld, Desiderio, Lebowitz, Silverman & Klestadt LLP
Under the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (“UFLPA”), effective June 21, 2022, a rebuttable presumption of “forced labor” will apply to goods that are produced, wholly or in part in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (“XUAR”) of China or by an entity identified as being associated with XUAR labor. GDLSK’s summary of the UFLPA can be accessed here.
Also by June 21st, a multi-agency Forced Labor Enforcement Task Force is to develop an enforcement strategy and provide guidance to importers regarding required due diligence and documentation. We will provide further information on this guidance once issued.
In the interim, we provide the following highlights based on information and statements recently provided by CBP:
• Increased enforcement in the area of forced labor is forthcoming. CBP is staffing up to meet this plan.
• The concept of “wholly or in part” encompasses instances in which inputs are made in XUAR. As such, finished goods produced even outside of China from such inputs are subject to detention.
• Also subject to detention are goods from entities identified as working with the XUAR government to recruit, transport, transfer, harbor or receive forced labor or members of persecuted groups out of the XUAR.
• The UFLPA requires that a list of high-priority sectors be developed and such list must include, at a minimum, cotton, tomatoes, and polysilicon.
• Goods will only be released if the CBP Commissioner determines: a) that the importer has fully complied with the guidance established by CBP and has completely responded to all CBP inquiries; and, b) by clear and convincing evidence, that the goods were not produced, or manufactured, wholly or in part, by forced labor. Any decision to release goods detained under suspicion of having been made with forced labor must be reported to Congress.
• The degree of evidence and documentation required to obtain release of goods detained under the UFLPA will be higher than that currently required in connection with goods detained under a Withhold Release Order (WRO).
• Under the UFLPA, the period for submitting supporting documentation will be thirty days (which can be extended) instead of the three months associated with WRO’s.
• When the forced labor presumption is not rebutted, the importer may export the goods (barring an affirmative finding of forced labor).
• CBP has been sending out “Known Importer” letters to companies believed to have imported from locations or entities potentially subject to the UFLPA. Such letters indicate that CBP will take into account the notification provided therein in connection with future administrative actions (including seizure, forfeiture, penalties and suspension or removal from the C-TPAT program).
In light of the impending effective date of the heightened requirements under the UFLPA, it is incumbent upon importers to develop a program to identify forced labor within their supply chains (or revisit existing programs). As part of such a program, importers should map each tier of their supply chains, conduct due diligence with respect to such chains to identify potential areas of concern and ensure that supply chain partners can timely provide supporting documentation. We are able to assist in these areas. Please contact Arthur Bodek or any other GDLSK attorney with questions or to discuss further.
Federal Register Notices:
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Prestressed Concrete Steel Wire Strand From the Republic of Turkey: Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With the Final Determination of Antidumping Investigation; Notice of Amended Final Determination
• Circular Welded Carbon Steel Standard Pipe and Tube Products From Turkey: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Preliminary Determination of No Shipments; 2020-2021
• Certain Carbon and Alloy Steel Cut-To-Length Plate From Belgium: Preliminary Results and Partial Rescission of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2020-2021
• Certain Carbon and Alloy Steel Cut-To-Length Plate From Italy: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Preliminary Determination of No Shipments; 2020-2021
• Large Diameter Welded Pipe From Canada: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Partial Rescission of Administrative Review; 2020-2021
• Finished Carbon Steel Flanges From India: Notice of Initiation and Preliminary Results of Changed Circumstances Review
• Diffusion-Annealed, Nickel-Plated Flat-Rolled Steel Products From Japan: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2020-2021
• Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Certain Microfluidic Devices; Notice of a Commission Determination Not To Review an Initial Determination Granting 10X Genomics, Inc.'s Motion for Return of Its Bond
• Chlorinated Isocyanurates From China and Spain; Scheduling of Full Five-Year Reviews
• Certain Pneumatic Compression Devices and Components Thereof; Institution of Investigation
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Certain Steel Nails From the United Arab Emirates: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2020-2021
• Certain Steel Nails From the Sultanate of Oman: Preliminary Affirmative Countervailing Duty Determination
• Certain Amorphous Silica Fabric From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of the Expedited First Sunset Review of the Countervailing Duty Order
• Polyethylene Terephthalate Resin From the Sultanate of Oman: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2020-2021
• Certain Steel Nails From Sri Lanka: Preliminary Affirmative Countervailing Duty Determination
• Certain Steel Nails From the Republic of Turkey: Preliminary Affirmative Countervailing Duty Determination
• Certain Steel Nails From Thailand: Preliminary Negative Countervailing Duty Determination
• Prestressed Concrete Steel Wire Strand From the Republic of Turkey: Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With the Final Determination of Countervailing Duty Investigation; Notice of Amended Final Determination
• Certain Steel Nails From India: Preliminary Affirmative Countervailing Duty Determination
• Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value: Certain Superabsorbent Polymers From the Republic of Korea: Preliminary Affirmative Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value, Postponement of Final Determination, and Extension of Provisional Measures
• Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Certain Graphics Systems, Components Thereof, and Digital Televisions Containing the Same; Institution of Investigation
• Certain Coated Paper Suitable for High-Quality Print Graphics Using Sheet-Fed Presses From China and Indonesia
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Ammonium Sulfate From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of the Expedited First Sunset Review of the Antidumping Duty Order
• Certain Amorphous Silica Fabric From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of the Expedited First Sunset Review of the Antidumping Duty Order
• Heavy Forged Hand Tools, Finished or Unfinished, With or Without Handles From the People's Republic of China: Continuation of Antidumping Duty Orders
• Certain Biaxial Integral Geogrid Products From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of the Expedited First Sunset Review of the Antidumping Duty Order
• Ammonium Sulfate From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of the Expedited First Sunset Review of the Countervailing Duty Order
• Steel Concrete Reinforcing Bar From Mexico: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2019-2020
• Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Narrow Woven Ribbons With Woven Selvedge From the People's Republic of China: Preliminary Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, Rescission in Part; 2020
• Certain Magnesia Carbon Bricks From the People's Republic of China: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2020-2021
• Preliminary Results of Changed Circumstances Review: Antidumping Duty Order on Certain Vertical Shaft Engines Between 225cc and 999cc, and Parts Thereof From the People's Republic of China
• Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Oil Country Tubular Goods From Argentina, Mexico, Russia, and South Korea; Scheduling of the Final Phase of Countervailing Duty and Anti-Dumping Duty Investigations
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Forged Steel Fittings From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review; 2019
• Wooden Cabinets and Vanities and Components Thereof From the People's Republic of China: Initiation of Circumvention Inquiries on the Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Orders
• Forged Steel Fittings From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2019-2020
OTEXA: Announcements - Office of Textile & Apparel
06/06/2022 – The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) extends exclusions of certain medical-care products needed to address the COVID-19 pandemic from additional duties imposed under the Section 301 investigation of China’s acts, policies, and practices related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation. The previous exclusions covering 81 products scheduled to expire on May 31, has been extended for an additional six months, through November 30, 2022. For more details see Federal Register notice 87 FR 33871.
One Parcel Worth $22.5 Million Seized by CBP Officers in Louisville - U.S. Customs & Border Protection
LOUISVILLE, Ky — Over 90% of all U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) counterfeit seizures occur in the international mail and express consignment environments, and June 2 was no exception. CBP officers in Louisville seized a parcel containing counterfeit designers watches that, if real, would have had a Manufacturer’s Retailed Price (MSRP) over $22.5 million.
The 584 counterfeit watches bore two trademarked logos: Rolex and Cartier. The shipment was arriving from an individual in Hong Kong and was destined for a resident in Jamaica, New York. Had these watches been real, the MSRP would have been $22.59 million.
“Intellectual property theft threatens America’s economic vitality and funds criminal activities and organized crime,” said LaFonda D. Sutton-Burke, Director, Field Operations-Chicago Field Office. “Our officers are dedicated to protecting private industry and consumers by removing these kinds of shipments from our commerce.”
E-Commerce sales have contributed to large volumes of low-value, small packages being imported into the United States. During the last four fiscal years, seized counterfeit watches have been worth the most according to their MSRP- last year that total was $1.18 billion. Consumer should make sure they shop from reputable sources online. To learn more about CBP’s E-Commerce strategy, visit CBP’s E-Commerce website.
“Consumers are always looking for the best deal, the unfortunate part is criminals are also online pedaling their counterfeit products,” said Thomas Mahn, Port Director-Louisville. “Our CBP officers will continue to seize counterfeit items that threaten the safety and health of consumers and weaken the U.S. economy.”
This seizure was just one of many that happened that night. Another parcel contained six counterfeit Richard Millie watches that would have been worth $755,000 had they been genuine.
Sold in underground outlets and on third party e-commerce websites, counterfeit commodities fund smugglers and members of organized crime. Consumers often believe they are buying a genuine product but soon realize the item is substandard and potentially dangerous.
Trade in counterfeit and pirated goods threatens America’s innovation, the competitiveness of our businesses, the livelihoods of U.S. workers and, in some cases, the health and safety of consumers and U.S. national security. CBP is on the frontline of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) enforcement, partnering with industry, other federal agencies, and foreign governments to fight cross-border trade of harmful and dangerous illicit goods.
When rights holders record their federally registered trademarks and copyrights with CBP, the agency can enforce those rights to protect them at the border. As of September 30, 2021, CBP was enforcing 20,758 active recorded copyrights and trademarks. In FY2021, CBP seized over 27,000 shipments with IPR violations. If the seized products were genuine, the total MSRP of the items would have been valued at over $3.3 billion. This represents a 152% increase compared to FY2020, when goods valued at $1.31 billion MSRP were seized for IPR violations. A return to pre-pandemic trading levels and an overall increase in the number of CBP seizures of counterfeit products account for the significant rise in MSRP.
CBP conducts operations at ports of entry throughout the United States, and regularly screens arriving international passengers and cargo for narcotics, weapons, and other restricted or prohibited products. CBP strives to serve as the premier law enforcement agency enhancing the Nation’s safety, security, and prosperity through collaboration, innovation, and integration.
New Analysis Finds Consumers Reported Losing More than $1 Billion in Cryptocurrency to Scams since 2021 - Federal Trade Commission
Most of the Losses Consumers Reported were to Bogus Cryptocurrency Investment Scam
Consumers reported losing over $1 billion to fraud involving cryptocurrencies from January 2021 through March 2022, according to a new analysis from the Federal Trade Commission. Fraud reports suggest cryptocurrency is quickly becoming the payment of choice for many scammers, with about one out of every four dollars reported lost to fraud paid in cryptocurrency.
The FTC’s latest Consumer Protection Data Spotlight finds that most of the cryptocurrency losses consumers reported involved bogus cryptocurrency investment opportunities, which totaled $575 million in reported losses since January 2021. These scams often falsely promise potential investors that they can earn huge returns by investing in their cryptocurrency schemes, but people report losing all the money they “invest.”
After cryptocurrency investment schemes, the next largest losses reported by consumers were on:
• Romance Scams: These often involve a love interest who tries to entice someone into investing in what turns out to be a cryptocurrency scam.
• Business and Government Impersonation Scams: Reports show these scammers often target consumers by claiming their money is at risk because of fraud or a government investigation and the only way to protect their cash is by converting it to cryptocurrency.
Reports suggest that cryptocurrency-related scams often begin on social media. Nearly half of consumers who reported a cryptocurrency related scam since 2021 said it started with an ad, post or message on a social media platform.
People ages 20 to 49 were more than three times as likely as older age groups to have reported losing money to a cryptocurrency scam. Older age groups, however, reported losing more money when they did report a cryptocurrency-related scam.
Some of the red flags consumers should watch out for include:
• anyone who claims they can guarantee profits or big returns by investing in cryptocurrency;
• people who require you to buy or pay in cryptocurrency; and
• a love interest who wants to show you how to invest in cryptocurrency or to send them cryptocurrency.
TSA Prepares for Summer Travel Demand and Higher Passenger Volumes - Transportation Security Administration
WASHINGTON – The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is prepared for a busy summer travel season with anticipated passenger volumes that will match and may occasionally exceed those of 2019 for the first time since the pandemic began.
The continued recovery from the low travel volumes during the pandemic may require more patience and planning than was necessary before the pandemic. Checkpoint environments and procedures have changed to enhance screening operations, ensure the safety and well-being of the traveling public, and to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
“Daily passenger volumes at TSA checkpoints show that people are traveling again, and TSA is ready for their return. Our airport security checkpoints include 47,500 highly-trained security professionals and new technologies that enhance security and reduce physical contact,” said TSA Administrator David Pekoske. “We continue to recruit, retain, train and equip a highly-skilled workforce, and we work continuously with our airport and airline partners to anticipate and prepare for higher traffic patterns.”
Earlier today, six airport and airline partners joined Pekoske during a media roundtable at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport to discuss their operational preparedness for anticipated summer season travel volumes and key changes implemented to ensure safe, secure and healthy travel. They include Sean Donohue, Dallas Fort-Worth International Airport CEO; Nicholas E. Calio, President and CEO, Airlines for America; Kevin Burke, President and CEO, Airports Council International – North America; Todd Hauptli, President and CEO, American Association of Airport Executives; Paul Doell, Vice President of Government Affairs, National Air Carrier Association; and Faye Malarkey Black, President and CEO, Regional Airline Association.
The summer travel season, which begins in late May and extends beyond Labor Day weekend, covers three full months and four major holidays, which includes Juneteenth as the newest federal holiday. Juneteenth will be recognized on Monday, June 20, 2022.
Recent security enhancements at airport screening checkpoints include two new technologies. TSA deployed Credential Authentication Technology (CAT) and Computed Tomography (CT) scanners to improve identification verification, and in some airports, enable digital identification verification at the Travel Document Checker podium and the scanning capabilities for carry-on bags. Both of these technologies enhance security and reduce physical contact within the checkpoints.
To date, TSA deployed 1,621 CAT units to 176 airports. Among those, 90 CAT units are modified and equipped to read and verify digital identification. TSA also deployed 402 CT units to 163 airports nationwide. In March, the agency announced the award of two orders for the procurement and maintenance of additional base and full-size CT scanners to be installed at checkpoints during the summer months.
The CT units provide TSA officers the ability to review a 3D image of passengers’ bags and reduce the need to search the bag’s contents. Passengers screened in security lanes with CT units do not need to remove their travel-size liquids bag or electronics.
The new CT units are currently being installed at Billings Logan International Airport in Montana, Albany International Airport in New York, Buffalo Niagara International Airport in New York, Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport and Raleigh-Durham International Airport in North Carolina.
For those who choose to travel this summer, follow these five simple tips to get through the TSA checkpoint quickly and efficiently.
Tip 1: Face masks are optional, but recommended. The CDC recommends face masks for passengers aged two and older in indoor areas of public transportation and transportation hubs as an effective precaution for those who seek to avoid exposure to COVID in higher risk public spaces. CDC provides health recommendations for domestic travel during COVID-19 and for international travel on its website at CDC.gov.
Tip 2: Pack smart; start with empty bags. Airline passengers who pack for travel with empty bags are less likely to bring prohibited items through a TSA checkpoint. Technology and modifications help reduce the need for physical contact with TSA officers, but those who take time to come prepared for the TSA checkpoint are far more likely to avoid delay and physical contact. Check for prohibited items by using the “What Can I Bring?” page on TSA.gov.
Tip 3: Know before you go. Airports, like highways, have high traffic surges and construction delays. Plan to arrive at the airport in plenty of time to check in, check bags and complete security screening in time to avoid stressful sprints to the departure gate. At the TSA checkpoint, have a valid ID card readily available and follow the liquids rule of 3.4 ounces or less, with the exception of hand sanitizer, which has a temporary 12-ounce limit in carry-on baggage.
Tip 4: Contact TSA for help if there are questions or concerns. Those who are preparing to travel and may have special circumstances, considerations or general questions about airport screening can get live assistance by tweeting questions and comments to @AskTSA or via Facebook Messenger, daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. EDT. You can also call the TSA Contact Center at 866-289-9673.
TSA also offers TSA Cares, a helpline for travelers with disabilities, medical conditions and other special circumstances. You may submit a request for assistance by calling TSA Cares at 855-787-2227, weekdays from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. and weekends/holidays from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Passengers may also use the TSA Cares form available on the TSA website which can be found at https://www.tsa.gov/travel/passenger-support.
Tip 5: Enroll now in TSA PreCheck® to “Travel with Ease.” By enrolling in TSA PreCheck, airline passengers can avoid removing shoes, belts, liquids, food, laptops and light jackets at the TSA checkpoint. Most new enrollees receive their known traveler number within five days, and membership lasts for five years. In April, 94% of TSA PreCheck passengers waited less than 5 minutes at the checkpoint.
For additional information about security screening or more travel tips before a summer trip, visit TSA.gov.