Updated - Extension of Certain COVID Related China 301 Exclusions - Grunfeld, Desiderio, Lebowitz, Silverman & Klestadt LLP
In a Federal Register notice of May 17, 2023, the USTR announced that it is extending certain China 301 exclusions that had been put in place and/or previously extended to help address the COVID-19 pandemic. They were scheduled to expire on May 15, 2023.
Based on a variety of factors, including the consideration of public comments, the USTR announced that, of the 81 such exclusions currently in place, 77 are being extended until September 30, 2023. The remaining 4 such exclusions are being subjected to a transition period under which their expiration will be extended through May 31, 2023.
We have prepared the (here) schedules of those COVID-19 exclusions that are being extended through September 30, 2023 and those that are only being extended through May 31, 2023.
Please do not hesitate to contact Arthur Bodek or any other of our attorneys with any questions or to discuss further.
Federal Register Notices:
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: 8:10 AM 5/22/2023Large Diameter Welded Pipe From the Republic of Korea: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2021-2022
• Preliminary Results of Changed Circumstances Review: Antidumping Duty Order on Certain Softwood Lumber Products From Canada
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Certain Preserved Mushrooms From the Netherlands, Poland, and Spain: Antidumping Duty Orders
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Brass Rod From India, Israel, and the Republic of Korea: Initiation of Countervailing Duty Investigations
• Fresh Garlic From the People's Republic of China: Continuation of Antidumping Duty Order
• Certain Non-Refillable Steel Cylinders From India: Initiation of Countervailing Duty Investigation
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Pure Magnesium From the People's Republic of China: Continuation of Antidumping Duty Order
• Certain New Pneumatic Off-the-Road Tires From India: Continuation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Orders
• Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Hardwood Plywood From China
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Stainless Steel Wire Rod From the Republic of Korea: Final Negative Determination of Circumvention of the Antidumping Duty Order
• Steel Concrete Reinforcing Bar From the Republic of Turkey: Final Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review and Rescission, in Part; 2020
Two Shipping Lines Pay Civil Penalties Totaling $2.65 Million - The Federal Martime Commission
Two ocean common carriers have paid a combined total of $2.65 million in civil penalties to resolve allegations of misconduct brought by the Federal Maritime Commission’s Bureau of Enforcement, Investigations, and Compliance.
Ocean Network Express Ptd. Ltd. (ONE) entered into a compromise agreement with the FMC in April to resolve allegations it violated 46 U.S.C. § 41102(c) by assessing detention charges when appointments were unavailable during allocated free time to return equipment. Under the terms of the agreement, ONE agreed to pay a $1.7 million civil penalty. The agreement incorporates a significant new compromise provision whereby ONE agreed that in addition to paying civil penalties, it will also furnish restitution to impacted shippers in the form of refunds and waivers. In concluding the compromise, ONE also stated its commitment to comply with the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022, as well as the Interpretative Rule on Detention and Demurrage.
Separately, the Commission reached a settlement agreement with Wan Hai Lines, Ltd. and Wan Hai Lines (USA) Ltd. (Wan Hai) to close an Order of Investigation and Hearing (Docket No. 21-16) issued by the Commission in December 2021. Wan Hai agreed to pay $950,000 in civil penalties to address allegations that it violated 46 U.S.C. § 41102(c) by failing to observe and enforce just and reasonable practices regarding its charges related to empty container returns. In addition to payment of a civil penalty, Wan Hai refunded the impacted shippers all detention charges collected under the invoices at issue and has implemented corrective actions to prevent future violations and ensure compliance with the Commission’s Interpretive Rule on Detention and Demurrage.
“The agreements being announced today send a clear message to international shipping community that ocean carriers must fully comply with the U.S. legal obligations. I commend our Bureau of Enforcement, Investigations, and Compliance for their efforts, which resulted in both meaningful civil penalties, and relief for impacted shippers,” said Federal Maritime Commission Chairman Daniel B. Maffei.
In June 2022, Hapag Lloyd AG paid $2 million in civil penalties to resolve allegations it violated 46 U.S.C. § 41102(c) in how it assessed detention charges.
A compromise agreement, such as the agreement concluded with ONE, is reached prior to the Commission initiating formal enforcement action against a targeted entity. A settlement agreement, such as the one reached with Wan Hai, concludes an ongoing enforcement proceeding. Both ONE and Wan Hai did not admit to any violation of law.
Civil penalties are paid directly to the General Fund of the U.S. Treasury. The Federal Maritime Commission does not receive any revenue when assessing civil penalties.
OTEXA: Announcements - Office of Textile & Apparel
[05/19/2023] – Climate Adaptation Export Competitiveness Request for Information: The International Trade Administration, in partnership with the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, released a Request for Information on the Federal Register seeking public comments on opportunities and challenges for U.S. exporters of climate adaptation and resilience-related technologies and services. We welcome input from U.S. industry to help align U.S. trade promotion and trade policy activities to those sectors and markets that present the greatest opportunities for exporters of climate adaptation and resilience-related technologies and services, as well as to address relevant trade barriers and promote U.S. industry competitiveness. This FRN also supports the President’s Emergency Plan for Adaption and Resilience (PREPARE). Please see additional details in the Federal Register announcement. Comments are requested no later than June 30, 2023.
Nearly 4,000 Fraudulent Refrigerator Water Filters Seized by CBP at LA/LB Seaport - U.S. Customs & Border Protection
llll Nearly 4,000 Fraudulent Refrigerator Water Filters Seized by CBP at LA/LB Seaport
LOS ANGELES— U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers assigned to the Los Angeles/Long Beach Seaport, in coordination with Import Specialists assigned to the Machinery Center of Excellence and Expertise (Machinery Center), seized 3,940 water filters bearing counterfeit National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) logos printed on the products. If genuine, the seized filters would have had an estimated manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $149,681.
CBP officers discovered the filters while conducting an examination of a mixed ocean freight arriving from China. The items were seized on April 10, after Machinery Center Import Specialists confirmed that the filters bore unauthorized NSF certification marks that had been recorded for border enforcement through CBP’s e-Recordation program.
“Consumers buying water filters on e-commerce sites should be aware that is extremely difficult to spot those containing fraudulent copied certifications,” said Carlos C. Martel, CBP Director of Field Operations in Los Angeles. “We are advising consumers to protect their families by ensuring they are purchasing these products from legitimate sources only.”
NSF International is an accredited, third-party certification body, which tests and evaluates products to public health and safety standards. Products certified by NSF must be tested, evaluated and determined to comply with specific standards, policies and procedures before they are authorized to bear the NSF certification mark..
According to the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM), counterfeit refrigerator water filters pose a serious risk to consumer health and safety. The use of fraudulently copied trademarks, branding and misleading claims make the filters look legitimate; and while the water may look, smell or taste fine, the counterfeit filters that were tested show that they fail to remove lead and other dangerous chemicals from water.
“CBP at the Los Angeles/Long Beach Seaport commits substantial resources to detect, intercept, seize, and destroy fraudulent and potentially hazardous household products,” said Susan S. Thomas, CBP Acting Port Director of the Los Angeles/Long Beach Seaport. “Protecting the health and safety of the American consumer is one of our top priorities.”
Since February 2021 to date, CBP at the Los Angeles/Long Beach Seaport has seized 67,342 counterfeit replacement refrigerator water filters, under sink ion exchange filters, pool and spa filters, and water bottle filters with a combined MSRP of $3,216,900.
CBP officers in coordination with U.S. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Special Agents assigned at the Trade Enforcement Coordination Center (TECC) worked closely to identify potential violators responsible for the importations of these water filters.
Nationwide in fiscal year (FY) 2022, CBP seized nearly 21, 000 shipments containing 25 million individual goods that violated intellectual property rights. The total estimated MSRP value of the seized goods, had they been genuine, was nearly $3 billion.
CBP has established an educational initiative at U.S. airports and online to raise consumer awareness and conscientiousness about the consequences and dangers that are often associated with the purchase of counterfeit and pirated goods. Information about the Truth Behind Counterfeits public awareness campaign is available at www.cbp.gov/fakegoodsrealdangers.
If you have any suspicion of or information regarding suspected fraud or illegal trade activity, please report the trade violation to e-Allegations Online Trade Violation Reporting. System or by calling 1-800-BE-ALERT.
Report intellectual property rights (IPR) violations to the National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center at https://www.iprcenter.gov/referral/ or by telephone at 1-866-IPR-2060.
Learn about the risks of buying counterfeit water filters by visiting the Filter It Out campaign web site: https://www.filteritout.org/.
CBP Encourages Travelers to Plan Ahead as Summer Travel Season Begins - U.S. Customs & Border Protection
DETROIT - As the Memorial Day holiday approaches, kicking-off the unofficial start to the summer travel season, US Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Office of Field Operations advises travelers to review travel requirements for entering the United States.
To ensure a smooth and hassle-free travel experience, CBP encourages travelers to visit CBP.gov/travel and review the latest requirements and regulations before embarking on their trips. Travelers are encouraged to keep in mind CBP's agriculture requirements when traveling to the United States. Travelers should declare all food, plants, and animal products they are bringing into the country to avoid any potential fines or penalties.
Additionally, CBP has the authority to conduct searches of travelers and their belongings upon entry into the United States. Travelers should be prepared to answer questions about their trip, including the purpose of their visit and the length of their stay. Finally, travelers should be aware of CBP's currency reporting requirements. All travelers entering or leaving the United States with more than $10,000 in currency or monetary instruments must declare it to CBP. Travelers may now file their FinCEN Form 105 Currency/Monetary Instruments Reporting Form prior to their trip, online at fincen105.cbp.dhs.gov.
Non-U.S. travelers, if applicable, are encouraged apply for their I-94 online or via the CBP One mobile app, available on both the Apple App Store and Google Play.
By taking the time to review CBP's travel requirements and regulations before their trips, travelers can help ensure a smooth and stress-free travel experience.
4 Fake Designer Watches Worth Over $577,000 Seized by Cincinnati CBP - U.S. Customs & Border Protection
CINCINNATI — US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers in Cincinnati seized a shipment containing multiple watches on May 3. The watches, which came from Hong Kong, would have had a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price of $577,800 had they been legitimate.
Officers inspected the shipment and discovered four luxury branded watches in their boxes. Based upon country of origin and inferior quality, officers suspected all were counterfeit. The watches were marked with trademarks owned by Jacob & Co, Audermars Piguet, and Rolex and were copies of the Astronomia Oak, Royal Oak, and Oyster Perpetual models, respectively. The shipment had an ultimate destination to an address in Miami, Florida.
“CBP promotes legitimate trade and travel,” said Cincinnati Port Director Richard Gillespie. “Counterfeit goods negatively impact consumers and businesses. Officers are trained to identify illicit shipments and work diligently for American consumers by stopping the flow of unlawful trade.”
All of the watches were determined to be counterfeit by CBP’s Centers for Excellence and Expertise (CEEs), the agency’s trade experts.
“CBP protects the country in a multitude of ways, including enabling fair and compliant trade,” said Director of Field Operations for the Chicago Field Office, LaFonda D. Sutton-Burke. “Our officers and specialists intercept threats before they reach the consumer, which provides safety to our nation.”
There are several ways consumers can protect themselves from spending their money on fakes:
• Purchase goods directly from the trademark holder or from authorized retailers.
• Know what price the product should be selling for. If the item is priced well below a reasonable value, it could be counterfeit. If a price seems too good to be true, this it is.
• Look for legitimate web sites that offer customer service contact information and return policies.
• Review CBP’s E-Commerce Counterfeit Awareness Guide for Consumers.
If you have any information regarding suspected fraud or illegal trade activity, please contact CBP through the e-Allegations Online Trade Violations Reporting System or by calling 1-800-BE-ALERT -IPR violations can also be reported to the National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center at https://www.iprcenter.gov/referral/ or by telephone at 1-866-IPR-2060.
FTC Proposes Amendments to Strengthen and Modernize the Health Breach Notification Rule - Federal Trade Commission
Proposed changes would underscore the rule’s applicability to health apps and other evolving technologies
The Federal Trade Commission is seeking comment on proposed changes to the Health Breach Notification Rule (HBNR) that include clarifying the rule’s applicability to health apps and other similar technologies.
Since the rule’s issuance, health apps and other direct-to-consumer health technologies, such as fitness trackers, have become commonplace. The proposed changes to the rule come as business practices and technological developments increase both the amount of health data collected from consumers, and the incentive for companies to use or disclose that sensitive data for marketing and other purposes.
“We are witnessing an explosion of health apps and connected devices, many of which aren’t covered by HIPAA, collecting vast amounts of sensitive consumer health information. When this information is breached, it is more vital than ever that mobile health app developers and others covered by the Health Breach Notification Rule provide consumers and the FTC with timely notice about what happened,” said Samuel Levine, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “The proposed amendments to the rule will allow it to keep up with marketplace trends, and respond to developments and changes in technology.”
The rule requires vendors of personal health records (PHR) and related entities that are not covered by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to notify individuals, the FTC, and, in some cases, the media of a breach of unsecured personally identifiable health data. It also requires third party service providers to vendors of PHRs and PHR-related entities to provide notification to such vendors and PHR-related entities following the discovery of a breach.
Protecting the privacy and security of personal health data is a high priority for the FTC, which has brought several cases in recent years involving the misuse of consumers personal health data, including two enforcement actions that alleged HBNR violations.
Earlier this week, the FTC announced a proposed order settling allegations that fertility app Premom violated the HBNR. In February 2023, the FTC announced its first enforcement action under the HBNR against telehealth and prescription drug discount provider GoodRx Holdings Inc. The FTC says GoodRx and Premom each violated the rule by failing to notify users about the companies’ unauthorized disclosure of users’ personally identifiable health information to third parties.
As part of a regular review of Commission rules, the FTC in 2020 sought comment on whether changes were needed to the HBNR. In September 2021, the FTC issued a policy statement affirming that health apps and connected devices that collect or use consumers’ health information must comply with the Health Breach Notification Rule.
After reviewing the public comments and consistent with the policy statement, the Commission has proposed the following changes to the HBNR:
• Revising several definitions to clarify the rule’s application to health apps and similar technologies not covered by HIPAA. This includes modifying the definition of “PHR identifiable health information” and adding two new definitions for “health care provider” and “health care services or supplies”;
• Clarifying that a “breach of security” under the rule includes an unauthorized acquisition of identifiable health information that occurs as a result of a data security breach or an unauthorized disclosure;
• Revising the definition of “PHR related entity” in two ways that pertain to the rule’s scope. For example, it makes clear that only entities that access or send unsecured PHR identifiable health information to a personal health record — rather than entities that access or send any information to a personal health record — qualify as PHR related entities;
• Clarifying what it means for a personal health record to draw PHR identifiable health information from multiple sources;
• Authorizing the expanded use of email and other electronic means of providing clear and effective notice of a breach to consumers;
• Expanding the required content that should be provided in the notice to consumers. For example, the notice would be required to include information about the potential harm stemming from the breach and the names of any third parties who might have acquired any unsecured personally identifiable health information; and
• Adding changes to improve the rule’s readability and promote compliance.
The public will have 60 days after the notice is published in the Federal Register to submit comments on the proposed changes to the rule. Information on how to submit a comment can be found in the notice. Once processed, the comments will be posted to Regulations.gov.
The Commission voted 3-0 at an open Commission meeting to publish the proposed changes to the HBNR in the Federal Register.
The lead staff attorneys on this matter are Ryan Mehm, Ronnie Solomon, and Elisa Jillson of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.
DHS Issues National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS) Bulletin - Department of Homeland Security
WASHINGTON – Today, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas issued a National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS) Bulletin regarding the continued heightened threat environment across the United States. This is the eighth NTAS Bulletin issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) since January 2021 and it replaces the current Bulletin that was set to expire at 2:00 PM ET today.
“Recent tragic events highlight the continued heightened threat environment our nation faces, and these threats are driven by violent extremists who seek to further their ideological beliefs and personal grievances,” said Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas. “We are working with partners across every level of government, within the private sector, and in local communities to keep Americans safe. We will continue to share information and intelligence, equip communities with training and resources, and fund security enhancement and prevention efforts through millions of dollars in grant funding.”
Lone offenders and small groups motivated by a range of ideological beliefs and personal grievances continue to pose a persistent threat to the United States. Both domestic violent extremists (DVEs) and those associated with foreign terrorist organizations continue to attempt to motivate supporters to conduct attacks, including through violent extremist messaging and online calls for violence. In the coming months, DHS expects the threat environment to remain heightened and that individuals may be motivated to violence by perceptions of the 2024 general election cycle and legislative or judicial decisions pertaining to sociopolitical issues. U.S. critical infrastructure, faith-based institutions, individuals or events associated with the LGBTQIA+-community, schools, racial and ethnic minorities, and government facilities and personnel are likely targets of potential violence.
DHS works with partners across every level of government, in the private sector, and in local communities to keep Americans safe, providing resources and support, including the following: