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Daily News

June 23, 2017

The Trump administration will seek to advance U.S. interests in its trade relationship with New Delhi when Prime Minister Narendra Modi visits the White House on Monday by seeking greater market access in India via a reduction in tariffs and raising the issue of intellectual property protection, a senior White House official said Friday.

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Democratic lawmakers are raising concerns about the effectiveness of labor provisions in free trade agreements after the U.S. lost a labor dispute to Guatemala.

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Democrats on the Senate Banking Committee say the Trump administration led them to believe he would not advance the controversial nomination of Scott Garrett for Export-Import Bank chairman and president, but would instead nominate Spencer Bachus -- announced in April as a pick for the bank's board -- for that slot while submitting the names of two Democrats for the board.

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June 22, 2017

Fear of retaliation against U.S. producers should not deter the Trump administration from defending America’s interests through every “legitimate” tool available -- including Section 232 investigations into the national security impact of imports, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer told the House Ways & Means Committee on Thursday.

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China on Thursday urged the U.S. to use caution in its Section 232 investigation into the national security implications of aluminum imports, arguing that the World Trade Organization's “legal framework” does not permit members to impose trade restrictions through an “abusive invocation” of national security.

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The Trump administration does not believe that Mexico must implement reforms to improve workers’ rights before Congress votes to approve and implement a redone NAFTA, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer told members of the Ways & Means Committee during a June 22 hearing.

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Canada's ambassador to the U.S. this week rebutted 10 U.S. senators' claims that Canada is denying the U.S. poultry industry significant access to its market despite the country's commitments in the North American Free Trade Agreement.

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June 21, 2017

Any actions that follow the Trump administration’s 232 national security investigations of steel and aluminum imports, as well as their impacts, must be “balanced,” U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer told the Senate Finance Committee on Wednesday -- floating the possibility of an “exclusion process” for manufacturers in need of steel and aluminum products not made in the United States.

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U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer believes the World Trade Organization dispute brought by China against the U.S. over the Commerce Department’s treatment of China as non-market economy in trade remedy cases is a top litigation priority for USTR, telling lawmakers a loss in the dispute would have serious consequences for the WTO.

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U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer on Wednesday told the Senate Finance Committee the U.S. is not looking for “major deliverables or significant negotiated outcomes” at the World Trade Organization's biennial ministerial in December.

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The American Institute for International Steel, flanked by other steel-consuming industry groups, is calling on Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to hold an additional public hearing on the department's Section 232 investigation into the national security implications of steel imports.

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Some negotiators of the plurilateral Environmental Goods Agreement are calling for a resumption of talks after trade ministers could not seal a deal last December, but the United States has yet to take a stance on the tariff-cutting agreement, Geneva sources said.

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Leaders of the Congressional Aluminum Caucus on June 20 called on Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to exempt Canada from any trade remedies that might result from the ongoing Section 232 investigation into the national security implications of aluminum imports.

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June 20, 2017

Democratic lawmakers, troubled by what they view as a lack of transparency and “due process” in the administration’s reviews of whether steel and aluminum imports are harming national security, are demanding briefings on both Section 232 investigations “immediately.”

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After nine years, the United States has lost -- to Guatemala -- the first-ever labor enforcement case brought to dispute settlement under a free trade agreement, sources told Inside U.S. Trade.

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U.S. cattle groups are asking a U.S. district court to vacate the Agriculture Department's beef-labeling regulations because they do not mandate that all imported beef labels show countries of origin, which the groups claim is a violation of U.S. law.

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The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative will initiate an out-of-cycle review of the eligibility of Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda for trade preferences provided under the African Growth and Opportunity Act as a result of a petition arguing the countries' ban on imports of secondhand clothing and footwear violates requirements they must meet to receive and maintain AGOA benefits.

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After three days of negotiations last week, World Trade Organization members are divided over the potential scope of a proposed ban on fisheries subsidies and what flexibility it might offer for developing countries.

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House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), in a speech to manufacturers on Tuesday, soft-pedaled the border adjustment tax at the center of the House GOP tax reform package, calling it “one idea” in the mix as the Trump administration and House and Senate Republican leaders continue to work on tax legislation.

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June 19, 2017

Should the Section 232 investigations into the national security implications of steel and aluminum imports lead to presidential actions against foreign producers, the U.S. will “probably” face legal challenges domestically as well as at the World Trade Organization, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said Monday.

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