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Petitions Filed Requesting the Imposition of Antidumping and Countervailing Duties on Imports of 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic Acid (“2,4-D”) from the People’s Republic of China and India - Grunfeld, Desiderio, Lebowitz, Silverman & Klestadt LLP
On March 14, 2024, Corteva Agriscience LLC filed a petition for the imposition of antidumping and countervailing duties on the imports of 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic Acid (“2,4-D”) from the People’s Republic of China and India. The petition alleges dumping margins of 143.73% to 388.53% (China) and 62.66% (India). The petition identifies certain foreign producers/exporters and U.S. importers of the investigated product.
The merchandise covered by this investigation is 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (“2,4-D”). 2,4-D has the Chemical Abstracts Service (“CAS”) registry number of 94-75-7 and the chemical formula C8H6Cl2O3. The 2,4-D component of any derivative products of 2,4-D, including but not limited to, amine salt and ester forms of 2,4-D are covered by the scope of the order. The petition provides additional detailed scope description and specific product exclusions.
The projected date of International Trade Commission’s Preliminary Conference is April 29, 2024. The earliest theoretical date for retroactive suspension of liquidation for AD is May 23, 2024; CVD is April 3, 2024.
Please feel free to contact one of our attorneys for further information, including a complete scope description, complete projected schedule for the AD/CVD investigation; the volume and value of imports; list of alleged subsidy programs; and list of identified foreign exporters and U.S. importers.
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Federal Register Notices:
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Certain Steel Nails From Malaysia: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2021-2022; Correction
• Certain Paper Plates From the People's Republic of China and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam: Postponement of Preliminary Determinations in the Countervailing Duty Investigations
• Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Certain Liquid Transfer Devices With an Integral Vial Adapter; Notice of Request for Submissions on the Public Interest
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Carbazole Violet Pigment 23 From India: Final Results of Antidumping Duty New Shipper Review; 2021-2022
• Supplemental Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews of Certain Quartz Surface Products From the People's Republic of China
• Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Certain Raised Garden Beds and Components Thereof; Notice of a Commission Determination Finding a Violation of Section 337; Issuance of a Limited Exclusion Order and Cease and Desist Order; Termination of Investigation
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Sodium Gluconate, Gluconic Acid, and Derivative Products From the People's Republic of China Continuation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Orders
• Certain Cold-Rolled Steel Flat Products From the Republic of Korea: Amended Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2021-2022
• Practice and Procedure: Practice and Procedure: Rules of General Application, Safeguards, Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Investigations, and Section 337 Adjudication and Enforcement
• Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Stainless Steel Flanges From the People's Republic of China and India: Initiation and Preliminary Results of Changed Circumstances Reviews and Intent To Revoke the Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Orders, in Part
• Steel Propane Cylinders From Thailand: Amended Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2021-2022
• Determination of Sales at Less-Than-Fair Value: Mattresses From Mexico: Postponement of Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value Investigation
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CBP Offers Easter Week Travel Tips - Customs & Border Protection
EL PASO, Texas — The week before Easter is traditionally one of the busiest periods for cross border travel in the El Paso area.
A common item CBP officers encounter during the Easter season are cascarones (confetti-filled eggshells). They are restricted to quantities of 12 per passenger and the shells may be decorated, etched, or painted but they must be clean, dry, and free of any egg residue.
CBP agriculture specialists will also occasionally encounter travelers attempting to import Easter chicks and ducklings. The importation of these and all breeds of live birds is prohibited, and the animals will be seized and turned over to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Veterinary Services or the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for disposition.
CBP agriculture specialists continue to fulfill CBP’s agriculture mission by excluding harmful pests and diseases from becoming established in the U.S.
To avoid any potential delays or fines due to travelers bringing prohibited/restricted agricultural items, CBP encourages travelers to declare all agricultural items to a CBP officer upon arrival and before making their journey to consult the Know Before You Go guide. It is best to declare all items acquired abroad to avoid penalties. If an item is declared but found to be prohibited it can be abandoned without consequence.
CBP is also reminding travelers that they can utilize the CBPOne Mobile Application to expedite the I-94 travel permit process if their journey takes them beyond the border zone.
Those intending to travel beyond the immediate border area should download CBPOne on their mobile devices. They can then apply for an I-94 permit, pay for and print their permit, view their travel history, and turn in their permit after travel is completed.
“Utilizing technology will make the I-94 permit process more efficient for all parties,” said El Paso Director of Field Operations Hector Mancha. “Travelers using this resource can enter all their information ahead of their arrival and then report directly to primary CBP Officers for the final step of the process.”
The traveler will no longer have to wait in long lines at the CBP permit office, they may now use the CBPOne app and report directly for entry. The CBPOne Mobile Application is available for most devices through the app stores for Apple and Android users.
U.S. citizens are reminded to bring a Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI)-compliant document, such as a valid U.S. passport, Trusted Traveler Program card, Enhanced Driver’s License, or Enhanced Tribal Card, when re-entering the United States and should be prepared to present a WHTI-compliant document if requested by a CBP Officer during a border inspection.
CBP encourages all travelers to have their WHTI-compliant entry documents in hand as they approach primary inspection booths and to declare all agricultural items, liquor, and currency or monetary instruments in excess of $10,000.
Members of the traveling public can monitor Border Wait Times online or obtain the BWT app on their smartphone via Apple App Store and Google Play so that they can observe the wait times and make an informed decision on which bridge to use. These wait times are updated on an hourly basis. Several websites also offer live views of current bridge conditions.
“Holy Week is always busy period so travelers should take all necessary steps to prepare for their entry to include building extra time into their crossing plans,” said Mancha.
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Counterfeit Kansas City Chiefs, Royals, and Kansas Jayhawks Championship Rings worth $2.71M Intercepted by Cincinnati CBP - U.S. Customs & Border Protection
CINCINNATI - Collectors and fans clamor for championship rings of their favorite collegiate and pro sports team, with some paying top dollar for the real thing. Unfortunately, third party retailers are selling counterfeit versions of these rings for top dollar, conning the consumer out of a lot of cash. Real championship rings are made of precious stones and yellow or white gold. Most counterfeit rings are made of cheap materials, fake gemstone, are of poor quality, and contain flaws. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers in Cincinnati recently seized on shipment containing 90 fake Kansas championship rings bearing the registered trademarks of the National Football League, National Collegiate Athletic Association and Major League Baseball.
The parcel was intercepted on March 21 when a non-intrusive x-ray examination yielded inconclusive results and a physical exam was required. Inside officers found 40 2019 Kansas City Chief Super Bowl rings, 20 1969 Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl Rings, 15 1985 Kansas City Royals rings, and 15 2022 Kansas Jayhawks championship rings. The interdicted rings were sent to an Import Specialist from the Consumer Products and Mass Merchandising Center for evaluation. The specialist noticed the rings were poor quality, had inferior packaging, a low declared value, were inaccurately declared, and lacked security features. The merchandise was deemed inauthentic and was seized for bearing counterfeit trademarks. The Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price would have been $2.71 million had the rings been genuine.
“Purchasing counterfeit sports memorabilia defunds our sports organizations, and the money profited from selling fake merchandise such as championship rings, is used to damage the United States economy and fund criminal enterprises.” said LaFonda D. Sutton-Burke, Director of Field Operations (DFO), Chicago Field Office. The DFO further added, “I am proud of the officers in Cincinnati, they work hard to protect our domestic businesses and stop illegal shipments.”
The shipment originated from Hong Kong and was destined to a residence in Atchison, Kansas. The shipment appeared to be a person-to-person transaction, which is a common tactic used by counterfeiters. This technique involves sending a shipment to one person. This person will then mail smaller addressed and prepackaged parcels concealed inside this larger shipment. This person then pays for shipping to the U.S. address, thus bypassing further scrutiny.
Consumers can take these simple steps to protect themselves and their families from counterfeit goods:
• Purchase goods directly from the trademark holder or from authorized retailers.
• When shopping online, read seller reviews and check for a working U.S. phone number and address that can be used to contact the seller.
• Review CBP’s E-Commerce Counterfeit Awareness Guide for Consumers.
• Remember that if the price of a product seems too good to be true, it probably is.
The illicit trafficking of counterfeit goods offers criminals a complementary source of income and a way through which they can launder money. Monies received from the sale of counterfeit products can be channeled towards the further production of fake goods or other illicit activities. Additionally, counterfeiting is a hugely profitable business, with criminals relying on the continued high demand for cheap goods coupled with low production costs.
Over the past five years, e-commerce has grown exponentially as consumers are increasingly completing purchases online. These purchases are typically shipped through international mail and express courier services.
In FY23, CBP seized 19,522 shipments with intellectual property rights (IPR) violations for a total of nearly 23 million counterfeit items. If the seized products were genuine, their total MSRP would be valued at $2.4 billion. CBP protects citizens from unsafe and substandard products by seizing merchandise infringing on trademarks and copyrights recorded with CBP through the e-Recordation program https://iprr.cbp.gov/s/.
CBP has established an educational initiative to raise consumer awareness about the consequences and dangers often associated with the purchase of counterfeit and pirated goods. Information about the Truth Behind Counterfeits public awareness campaign can be found at https://www.cbp.gov/FakeGoodsRealDangers.
CBP encourages anyone with information about counterfeit merchandise illegally imported into the United States to submit an e-Allegation. The e-Allegation system provides a means for the public to anonymously report to CBP any suspected violations of trade laws or regulations related to the importation of goods in the U.S.
CBP’s border security mission is led at 328 ports of entry by CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations. Please visit CBP Ports of Entry to learn more about how CBP’s Office of Field Operations secures our nation’s borders. Learn more about CBP at www.CBP.gov.
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OTEXA: Announcements - Office of Textile & Apparel
[03/14/2024] – The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) requests comments and will hold a public hearing to inform objectives and strategies that advance U.S. supply chain resilience in trade negotiations, enforcement, and other initiatives. April 12, 2024: Due date for filing requests to appear and a summary of expected testimony at the public hearing; April 22, 2024: Due date for submission of written comments; May 2, 2024: USTR will convene a public hearing in the main hearing room of the U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20436 beginning at 10:00 a.m.; and May 16, 2024: Due date for submission of post-hearing written comments from persons who testified at the public hearing.
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FTC to Hold Virtual Informal Hearing on April 24, 2024 As Part of its Review of the Proposed Rule Prohibiting Junk Fees - Federal Trade Commission
The Federal Trade Commission will hold a virtual informal hearing on April 24, 2024, on its proposed Rule on Unfair or Deceptive Fees, commonly known as junk fees. During the hearing, which will be open to the public and viewable on the FTC’s website, interested organizations will have the opportunity to provide oral statements.
On October 11, 2023, the Federal Trade Commission announced a proposed rule to prohibit junk fees. The proposed rule would ban businesses from running up the bills with hidden and bogus fees, ensure consumers know exactly how much they are paying and what they are getting, and help spur companies to compete on offering the lowest price. Businesses would have to include all mandatory fees when telling consumers a price, making it easier for consumers to comparison shop for the lowest price.
In response to the proposed rulemaking, 17 commenters requested to present their positions at an informal hearing. The Federal Register notice states that these entities will be entitled to make oral presentations at the informal hearing on April 24, 2024. Oral statements at the event will be limited to 15 minutes each. These organizations, however, may also submit written documents to the FTC within 14 days after publication of the notice in the Federal Register. Submission instructions are included in the notice. All submissions will be placed on the public record.
The informal hearing will be conducted virtually, starting at 10 a.m. ET, and Administrative Law Judge Jay L. Himes has been appointed to preside over the event. The link to the hearing webcast will be posted shortly before the date of the event on the FTC’s website.
The Commission vote approving publication of the notice was 3-0.
The Federal Trade Commission works to promote competition and protect and educate consumers. The FTC will never demand money, make threats, tell you to transfer money, or promise you a prize. Learn more about consumer topics at consumer.ftc.gov, or report fraud, scams, and bad business practices at ReportFraud.ftc.gov. Follow the FTC on social media, read consumer alerts and the business blog, and sign up to get the latest FTC news and alerts.
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Seven Hackers Associated with Chinese Government Charged with Computer Intrusions Targeting Perceived Critics of China and U.S. Businesses and Politicians - DOJ
Defendants Operated as Part of the APT31 Hacking Group in Support of China’s Ministry of State Security’s Transnational Repression, Economic Espionage and Foreign Intelligence Objectives
View the indictment here.
An indictment was unsealed today charging seven nationals of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) with conspiracy to commit computer intrusions and conspiracy to commit wire fraud for their involvement in a PRC-based hacking group that spent approximately 14 years targeting U.S. and foreign critics, businesses, and political officials in furtherance of the PRC’s economic espionage and foreign intelligence objectives.
The defendants are Ni Gaobin (倪高彬), 38; Weng Ming (翁明), 37; Cheng Feng (程锋), 34; Peng Yaowen (彭耀文), 38; Sun Xiaohui (孙小辉), 38; Xiong Wang (熊旺), 35; and Zhao Guangzong (赵光宗), 38. All are believed to reside in the PRC.
“The Justice Department will not tolerate efforts by the Chinese government to intimidate Americans who serve the public, silence the dissidents who are protected by American laws, or steal from American businesses,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland. “This case serves as a reminder of the ends to which the Chinese government is willing to go to target and intimidate its critics, including launching malicious cyber operations aimed at threatening the national security of the United States and our allies.”
“Over 10,000 malicious emails, impacting thousands of victims, across multiple continents. As alleged in today’s indictment, this prolific global hacking operation – backed by the PRC government – targeted journalists, political officials, and companies to repress critics of the Chinese regime, compromise government institutions, and steal trade secrets,” said Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco. “The Department of Justice will relentlessly pursue, expose, and hold accountable cyber criminals who would undermine democracies and threaten our national security.”
"Today's announcement exposes China's continuous and brash efforts to undermine our nation's cybersecurity and target Americans and our innovation,” said FBI Director Christopher Wray. "As long as China continues to target the US and our partners, the FBI will continue to send a clear message that cyber espionage will not be tolerated, and we will tirelessly pursue those who threaten our nation’s security and prosperity. This indictment underscores our unwavering commitment to disrupt and deter malicious cyber activity, and safeguard our citizens, businesses, and critical infrastructure from threats in cyberspace."
“The indictment unsealed today, together with statements from our foreign partners regarding related activity, shed further light on the PRC Ministry of State Security’s aggressive cyber espionage and transnational repression activities worldwide,” said Assistant Attorney General Matthew G. Olsen of the Justice Department’s National Security Division. “Today’s announcements underscore the need to remain vigilant to cybersecurity threats and the potential for cyber-enabled foreign malign influence efforts, especially as we approach the 2024 election cycle. The Department of Justice will continue to leverage all tools to disrupt malicious cyber actors who threaten our national security and aim to repress fundamental freedoms worldwide.”
“These allegations pull back the curtain on China’s vast illegal hacking operation that targeted sensitive data from U.S. elected and government officials, journalists, and academics; valuable information from American companies; and political dissidents in America and abroad. Their sinister scheme victimized thousands of people and entities across the world, and lasted for well over a decade,” said U.S. Attorney Breon Peace for the Eastern District of New York. “America’s sovereignty extends to its cyberspace. Today’s charges demonstrate my office’s commitment to upholding and protecting that jurisdiction, and to putting an end to malicious nation state cyber activity.”
“The recent indictments against the Chinese actors reaffirm the FBI’s relentless dedication to combating cyber threats,” said Assistant Director Bryan Vorndran of the FBI Cyber Division. “They serve as a reminder that cyber adversaries who seek to compromise our nation’s systems and target US officials cannot rely on the cloak of anonymity and will face consequences for their actions.”
“APT31 Group’s practices further demonstrate the size and scope of the PRC’s state-sponsored hacking apparatus,” said Special Agent in Charge Robert W. “Wes” Wheeler Jr. of the FBI Chicago Field Office. “FBI Chicago worked tirelessly to uncover this complex web of alleged foreign intelligence and economic espionage crimes. Thanks to these efforts, as well as our partnerships with the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and fellow Field Offices, the FBI continues to be successful in holding groups accountable and protecting national security.”
Overview
As alleged in the indictment and court filings, the defendants, along with dozens of identified PRC Ministry of State Security (MSS) intelligence officers, contractor hackers, and support personnel, were members of a hacking group operating in the PRC and known within the cybersecurity community as Advanced Persistent Threat 31 (the APT31 Group). The APT31 Group was part of a cyberespionage program run by the MSS’s Hubei State Security Department, located in the city of Wuhan. Through their involvement with the APT31 Group, since at least 2010, the defendants conducted global campaigns of computer hacking targeting political dissidents and perceived supporters located inside and outside of China, government and political officials, candidates, and campaign personnel in the United States and elsewhere and American companies.
The defendants and others in the APT31 Group targeted thousands of U.S. and foreign individuals and companies. Some of this activity resulted in successful compromises of the targets’ networks, email accounts, cloud storage accounts, and telephone call records, with some surveillance of compromised email accounts lasting many years.
Hacking Scheme
The more than 10,000 malicious emails that the defendants and others in the APT31 Group sent to these targets often appeared to be from prominent news outlets or journalists and appeared to contain legitimate news articles. The malicious emails contained hidden tracking links, such that if the recipient simply opened the email, information about the recipient, including the recipient’s location, internet protocol (IP) addresses, network schematics, and specific devices used to access the pertinent email accounts, was transmitted to a server controlled by the defendants and those working with them. The defendants and others in the APT31 Group then used this information to enable more direct and sophisticated targeted hacking, such as compromising the recipients’ home routers and other electronic devices.
The defendants and others in the APT31 Group also sent malicious tracking-link emails to government officials across the world who expressed criticism of the PRC government. For example, in or about 2021, the conspirators targeted the email accounts of various foreign government individuals who were part of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC), a group founded in 2020 on the anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests whose stated purpose was to counter the threats posed by the Chinese Communist Party to the international order and democratic principles. The targets included every European Union member of IPAC, and 43 United Kingdom parliamentary accounts, most of whom were members of IPAC or had been outspoken on topics relating to the PRC government.
To gain and maintain access to the victim computer networks, the defendants and others in the APT31 Group employed sophisticated hacking techniques including zero-day exploits, which are exploits that the hackers became aware of before the manufacturer, or the victim were able to patch or fix the vulnerability. These activities resulted in the confirmed and potential compromise of economic plans, intellectual property, and trade secrets belonging to American businesses, and contributed to the estimated billions of dollars lost every year as a result of the PRC’s state-sponsored apparatus to transfer U.S. technology to the PRC.
Targeting of U.S. Government Officials and U.S. and Foreign Politicians and Campaigns
The targeted U.S. government officials included individuals working in the White House, at the Departments of Justice, Commerce, Treasury, and State, and U.S. Senators and Representatives of both political parties. The defendants and others in the APT31 Group targeted these individuals at both professional and personal email addresses. Additionally in some cases, the defendants also targeted victims’ spouses, including the spouses of a high-ranking Department of Justice official, high-ranking White House officials, and multiple U.S. Senators. Targets also included election campaign staff from both major U.S. political parties in advance of the 2020 election.
The allegations in the indictment regarding the malicious cyber activity targeting political officials, candidates, and campaign personnel are consistent with the March 2021 Joint Report of the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security on Foreign Interference Targeting Election Infrastructure or Political Organization, Campaign, or Candidate Infrastructure Related to the 2020 US Federal Elections. That report cited incidents when Chinese government-affiliated actors “materially impacted the security of networks associated with or pertaining to U.S. political organizations, candidates, and campaigns during the 2020 federal elections.” That report also concluded that “such actors gathered at least some information they could have released in influence operations,” but which the Chinese actors did not ultimately deploy in such a manner. Consistent with that conclusion, the indictment does not allege that the hacking furthered any Chinese government influence operations against the United States. The indictment’s allegations nonetheless serve to underscore the need for U.S. (and allied) political organizations, candidates, and campaigns to remain vigilant in their cybersecurity posture and in otherwise protecting their sensitive information from foreign intelligence services, particularly in light of the U.S. Intelligence Community’s recent assessment that “[t]he PRC may attempt to influence the U.S. elections in 2024 at some level because of its desire to sideline critics of China and magnify U.S. societal divisions.”
Targeting of U.S. Companies
The defendants and others in the APT31 Group also targeted individuals and dozens of companies operating in areas of national economic importance, including the defense, information technology, telecommunications, manufacturing and trade, finance, consulting, legal, and research industries. The defendants and others in the APT31 Group hacked and attempted to hack dozens of companies or entities operating in these industries, including multiple cleared defense contractors who provide products and services to the U.S. military, multiple managed service providers who managed the computer networks and security for other companies, a leading provider of 5G network equipment, and a leading global provider of wireless technology, among many others.
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