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Daily News

September 02, 2020

The Bureau of Industry and Security is focused on countering China’s military-civil fusion strategy as it grapples with the country as threat to the United States’ economic and national security, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and acting Under Secretary for Industry and Security Cordell Hull said on Wednesday.

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The House Ways & Means trade subcommittee this fall likely will turn its attention to the renewal of several trade programs set to expire this year, with a “fairly active” lame-duck session expected after the election, according to Chairman Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR).

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The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative’s new plan to address the complaints of southeastern seasonal growers about their Mexican counterparts is “politically motivated” and positions the U.S. as an untrustworthy trading partner, the Fresh Produce Association of the Americas, which represents importers of Mexican produce, said on Wednesday.

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September 01, 2020

Petrochemical industry efforts to influence U.S.-Kenya trade talks could be a “flashpoint” for House Democrats this fall, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) said on Monday, citing fears that the Trump administration could pressure the African country to undo laws limiting what he called the “horrific” proliferation of plastics.

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Jeffrey Gerrish, who until last month was the deputy U.S. Trade Representative for Asia, Europe, the Middle East and industrial competitiveness, said the U.S. and China to date have been able to resolve a slew of issues at the technical level without resorting to their phase-one deal’s enforcement mechanism.

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Former European Union Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström is the latest to make a play to lead the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, joining candidates from the U.S. and Canada as well as likely additional European hopefuls.

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An advance notice of proposed rulemaking issued last week by the Bureau of Industry and Security was broad in scope and did not delineate a definition of “foundational technologies” that need stricter export controls, but analysts believe the agency is laying out a path for a narrower definition to eventually be enforced.

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A limited bilateral trade deal between the U.S. and India can be concluded any time the U.S. wishes, Indian Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal said on Tuesday.

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August 31, 2020

The U.S. on Friday blocked China’s first request for a compliance panel to assess whether Beijing has adequately changed its domestic support measures for some agricultural commodities to align with World Trade Organization rules, even as the U.S. said it had “paused” its retaliation proceedings.

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Following Section 232 consultations with the U.S., Mexico has agreed to create a “strict export monitoring” system through June 2021 to address recent surges in pipe, mechanical tubing and semi-finished steel products, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said on Monday.

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The implementation of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement to date has been smoother than expected, a top U.S. Customs and Border Protection official tells Inside U.S. Trade.

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August 30, 2020

President Trump has tightened a quota on semi-finished steel from Brazil, pointing to a contraction in the U.S. steel market this year and “significant changes” since the countries agreed to the arrangement in 2018.  

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August 28, 2020

The U.S. on Friday said it intends to begin a “new process” to resolve longstanding World Trade Organization disputes with the European Union over aircraft subsidies and “ensure a level playing field.”

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Witnesses at the Trump administration’s recent hearings on the impact of seasonal produce imports from Mexico on the U.S. industry presented no real evidence that investigations or restrictions would be justified, a Mexican official told Inside U.S. Trade on Thursday, saying the issue has become “political” in an election year.

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Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen on Friday announced the country would ease restrictions on U.S. beef and pork imports, which she called a “precondition” for a U.S.-Taiwan trade agreement.

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A group of foreign military attachés representing some of the United States’ closest allies is asking Senate lawmakers to oppose House defense legislation that would strengthen “Buy American” requirements for some of the Pentagon’s largest weapons programs, according to a letter obtained by Inside Defense.

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August 27, 2020

Chinese imports of U.S. soybeans are expected to “continue to increase” as part of the U.S.-China phase-one agreement, according to a Chinese Ministry of Agriculture official, as reported sales of U.S. crops to China have risen in August.

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The World Trade Organization needs a proactive director-general who will “diplomatically push” members to move forward on the paralyzed Appellate Body, according to the Tudor Ulianovschi, the Moldovan candidate for the job.

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The tech industry is bracing for a Commerce Department interim rule on securing the nation’s information and communications technology supply chain despite requests for a supplemental notice to allow for additional comments.

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August 26, 2020

European Union Trade Commissioner Phil Hogan resigned on Wednesday amid increasing controversy surrounding his breach of Irish pandemic restrictions in attending a golf society event last week.

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