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Daily News

December 20, 2018

In lieu of action by the European Union, France has announced a plan to implement a digital services tax in 2019, despite U.S. industry claims that the tax is a trade barrier that violates World Trade Organization rules.

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Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) this week said the chances that the U.S. will strike a bilateral deal with an African country remain slim, citing a lack of enthusiasm among African officials and recent conversations with Trump administration officials.

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December 19, 2018

U.S. Ambassador to the World Trade Organization Dennis Shea on Wednesday rebutted claims that the U.S. was at the center of the “deep crisis” at the WTO, instead laying the blame on China and its trade-distorting policies, which the U.S. sees as incompatible with the multilateral trading system.

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A World Trade Organization dispute settlement panel determined this week that while the Commerce Department could establish a chain of government control to prove an entity is a public body -- a key question in a case involving countervailing duties on two Turkish steel producers -- the U.S. did not provide sufficient evidence to support its claim.

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Auto groups are calling on the U.S. to prioritize regulatory cohesion with the European Union in a potential trade deal with Brussels, though the two parties initially agreed to leave cars out of the discussion.

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December 18, 2018

The U.S. on Tuesday elaborated on its contention that the World Trade Organization’s Appellate Body should not treat its rulings as precedent, saying that in doing so the Appellate Body exceds the authority granted to it by WTO members.

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Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and ranking member Ron Wyden (D-OR) have told the Commerce Department, despite modifications to the Section 232 product-exclusion process earlier this year, companies applying for immunity continue to be confused and disadvantaged.

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World Trade Organization Deputy Director-General Alan Wolff on Monday called for an overhaul of the way in which members self-designate as developed or developing countries.

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December 17, 2018

China on Monday admitted it has in the past exceeded its agricultural domestic support limits, but said it had eliminated the programs that led to those violations, according to notifications made to the World Trade Organization.

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Members of the World Trade Organization on Monday implored the United States to show leadership in helping to reform the organization it was instrumental in founding rather than play a disruptive role that has led some to believe the WTO is headed toward permanent paralysis.

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The European Parliament think thank, in an assessment of how the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement will impact European companies, is contending that some provisions of the deal might not be in compliance with World Trade Organization rules.

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December 14, 2018

Incoming Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley's top trade priority in the next Congress will be the ratification of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, the Iowa Republican told Inside U.S. Trade this week.

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Business and technology groups want the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to address problematic digital services tax proposals recently pitched by the European Union, as well as longstanding regulatory cooperation issues with the bloc.

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Several agriculture groups are calling for market access and sanitary and phytosanitary regulation language like that in the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement to be included in a U.S.-European Union trade deal, with one suggesting a World Trade Organization challenge could be coming if thorny issues are not ironed out during negotiations.

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GENEVA -- Some World Trade Organization members -- including China -- are linking progress on reforms in areas like state-owned enterprises, industrial subsidies and forced technology transfer to talks on agricultural subsidies, which have long been deadlocked at the WTO, according to Geneva sources.

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The U.S. is perfectly positioned to extract concessions from Beijing as the next 90 days progress, Clete Willems, the deputy assistant to the president for international economics, argued on Thursday.

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December 13, 2018

Clete Willems, the deputy assistant to the president for international economics and the U.S. “Sherpa” at this year's G20 leaders summit, on Thursday touted what he called a historic communiqué from the leaders and asserted that the U.S. was more committed to the multilateral trading system than ever before.

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Clete Willems, the deputy assistant to the president for international economics and the U.S. “Sherpa” at this year's G20 leaders summit, on Thursday touted what he called a historic communiqué from the leaders and asserted that the U.S. was not turning its back on the multilateral trading system.

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Amid the day-to-day drama and uncertainty surrounding the United Kingdom's exit from the European Union, the U.S. has continued to clear procedural hurdles to make way for a U.S.-UK free trade deal -- but the the amount of trade that could be addressed in future talks is entirely dependent on the UK-EU relationship, analysts say.

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Mexican legislation to establish labor reforms called for in the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement is unlikely to be passed before a Jan. 1 deadline included in the pact, leaving sources and lawmakers questioning whether the timing of the deal’s entry into force might be impacted.

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