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Tag: Trade

Moving Forward on Minerals

Moving Forward on Minerals

Yesterday the U.S. House of Representatives passed, for the second year in a row, a bill to streamline federal laws to facilitate projects to extract critical minerals from the Earth's crust. What makes these minerals critical, you ask? Many minerals, including but not limited to so-called "rare earth elements", are critical inputs for NEMA member companies. For many of these inputs, U.S. manufacturers are dependent on uncertain sources outside the U.S. The National Strategic Read more [...]
Tariff Suspension Legislation Re-Introduced in House

Tariff Suspension Legislation Re-Introduced in House

Yesterday in the House of Representatives the leadership of the Ways & Means Committee introduced a Miscellaneous Tariff Bill that would, if it becomes law, suspend U.S. customs duties temporarily on over 2,000 imported items needed by U.S. manufacturers but not manufactured in the U.S. Included in the package are several types of electrical componentry of interest to NEMA members. The National Association of Manufacturers estimates that tariff savings for U.S. companies of over $748 Read more [...]
Long Time Coming

Long Time Coming

Today (Aug. 22) two events will take place in the world of international trade, both of which have been in the works for quite a while. In one case, two years is the "long time" I am talking about. In the other: 19 years. In the former case, the event will be met with loud cheers by some but by likely muffled groans from many others. In the latter case, the event will be roundly cheered, except by U.S. businesses who, due to inaction of Congress will have to wait to reap the rewards Read more [...]
Helping the Bottom Line

Helping the Bottom Line

Somewhat behind the scenes, the House and Senate are in the middle of a process to determine how to cut costs for U.S. manufacturers without significantly denting U.S. government revenues: the construction of a Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB). From time to time Congress considers proposals to temporarily suspend application of U.S. import duties on specific types of equipment, components and industrial inputs which may not be available from domestic suppliers. The intent is to give a tariff break Read more [...]
DOT Rulemaking Revision Pending for Lithium Batteries

DOT Rulemaking Revision Pending for Lithium Batteries

A new approach to updating U.S. regulations on air shipment of lithium batteries is expected this spring following President Obama’s Feb. 14 signature on legislation authorizing activities of the Federal Aviation Administration and a Feb. 10 agreement at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) on new requirements set to take effect on January 1, 2013. The ICAO Dangerous Goods Panel chose to require all bulk shipments of lithium cells and/or batteries shipped by air to be treated Read more [...]
Persistence is Rewarded

Persistence is Rewarded

Yesterday, with bipartisan votes, Congress approved legislation proposed by President Obama to implement free trade agreements (FTAs) with South Korea, Colombia and Panama. The votes are the most significant milepost to date on the road to greater market access for U.S. electroindustry exporters to these 3 important markets in Asia and Latin America -- a road that began way back in 2004 in the case of Panama. President Obama, who is meeting with the South Korean President today prior to Mr. Lee Read more [...]
ACTA-tion on Trade

ACTA-tion on Trade

Tomorrow (Oct. 1) in Japan representatives from several governments, including the U.S., are expected to put pen to paper and formally sign an international agreement to combat theft of intellectual property rights. As NEMA has pointed out repeatedly, product counterfeiting as well as trade- and certification-mark piracy are not just an issue for movies and handbags but also for some sectors of the global electroindustry. These can also present safety issues, as explained by the Electrical Safety Read more [...]
Clearing the Way for Trade

Clearing the Way for Trade

In his jobs speech to Congress, President Obama asked members to "clear the way" for consideration of the long-stalled 3 free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama. Today, the way is expected to become clearer as the Senate starts formal consideration of extension of the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program and prepares to add renewal and extension of the Labor Department's Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) program and send the legislation back to the Read more [...]
Building on Trade

Building on Trade

Picking up from where I left off: We are a week closer to the return of Congress from its August break and the level of anxiety is rising. President Obama is to make a speech next month presenting a jobs initiative. Meanwhile, we wait for the White House to send implementing legislation to Congress for 3 free trade agreements (FTAs) that will help support U.S. job creation and retention. This blog entry is the second in a series on the U.S. FTAs with South Korea, Colombia and Panama and why Read more [...]
Catching Up on Trade

Catching Up on Trade

In his weekly radio address last Saturday, President Obama listed several things that Congress can do to help American workers as soon as it returns from an August break: extend tax breaks for middle class and low income families, extend unemployment benefits, and approve three market-opening free trade agreements. This item is the first in a weekly series leading into September on those free trade agreements, why you should support them, and why you should let your members of Congress know. You Read more [...]