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May 10, 2021

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative on Monday wrapped up a series of hearings on proposed tariff actions against countries with digital services taxes in place, heeding calls from representatives of labor-intensive Indian industries to avoid imposing duties on New Delhi and pursue an agreement at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development instead. 

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Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) wants the Senate this month to vote on a legislative package aimed at making the U.S. more competitive with China, he said on the Senate floor on Monday -- though the legislation faces an uncertain future in the House, where the Republican Study Committee has raised issues with the centerpiece of the package. 

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Congressional Democrats on Monday lauded the AFL-CIO's first labor complaint under the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, hoping it will trigger the deal’s novel rapid-response mechanism in a case against a Mexican auto-parts factory.  

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May 07, 2021

Some in the Mexican private sector are welcoming U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai’s willingness to put the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement’s dispute settlement mechanisms to use as bilateral trade irritants accumulate, industry sources told Inside U.S. Trade this week.

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New legislation introduced by Rep. Darin LaHood (R-IL) on Friday would require that developing countries seeking preferential trade treatment in the U.S. have in place policies that facilitate, not restrict, digital trade.

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U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai on Friday released new transparency principles she said would help establish “two-way communication with the American public” on trade policy and day-to-day agency operations.

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The U.S. International Trade Commission on Thursday announced revisions to the title, scope and schedule of a recently launched fact-finding investigation into the effects of foreign censorship on U.S. businesses and instituted a second, related probe.

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The European Union this week moved to update its industrial strategy by issuing a legislative proposal aimed at reining in foreign subsidies in non-market economies, laying out a strategy to deal with strategic supply chain dependencies, and continuing efforts to reach out to allies, especially in critical areas.

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May 06, 2021

The Commerce Department is “not joking around” in enforcing trade rules and taking other actions against China even as the White House reviews its overall stance toward Beijing, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said on Thursday.

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Opponents of the COVID-19-related waiver of World Trade Organization intellectual property protections, surprised by the U.S. announcement on Wednesday that it would back the effort, are being pushed to follow Washington's lead, which has decisively changed the conversation in Geneva.

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Countries must address a “looming mismatch” between climate goals and the availability of critical minerals, the International Energy Agency says in a new report, highlighting a key issue for the Biden administration as it looks to secure supply chains.

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The U.S. should re-examine the Trump administration’s “misguided” and “short-sighted” decision in 2017 to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the leaders of the Senate Finance trade subcommittee told U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai this week.

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May 05, 2021

The first U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement Free Trade Commission meeting between the three countries’ top trade officials will take place in mid-May, industry sources tell Inside U.S. Trade

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U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai next week will appear before the Senate Finance Committee for a hearing on the Biden administration’s 2021 trade agenda.

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The U.S. will support a proposed waiver of World Trade Organization intellectual property obligations for COVID-19 vaccines and “actively participate” in text-based negotiations in Geneva, U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai announced on Wednesday, arguing the global emergency “calls for extraordinary measures.”

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May 04, 2021

More than 100 House Democrats have thrown their weight behind a proposed World Trade Organization waiver of certain intellectual property obligations for COVID-19 vaccines and medicines, with half the caucus entreating the Biden administration to support the waiver as a moral, economic and public health priority.

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The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative is looking for a new assistant USTR for labor following the retirement of Lewis Karesh, who spent nearly 16 years in the role.

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The Commerce Department is banking on a Taiwanese semiconductor manufacturer to prioritize supplying the struggling U.S. auto industry, Secretary Gina Raimondo said on Tuesday, describing the strategy as a short-term solution to shortages she said are putting “so many American jobs on the line.”

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The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement “is a starting point” for further regional work on climate, labor and expanding trade benefits to underserved communities, U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai said on Tuesday.

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Angela Ellard, chief trade counsel for House Ways & Means Committee Republicans, will be a World Trade Organization deputy director-general, her new boss, Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, announced on Tuesday. 

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