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The Daily Bugle Weekly Highlights: Week 1 (4 – 8 Jan 2021)

Every Monday we post the highlights out of last week’s FCC Export/Import Daily Update (“The Daily Bugle”). Send out every business day to approximately 8,500 readers of changes to defense and high-tech trade laws and regulations, The Daily Bugle is a free daily newsletter from Full Circle Compliance, edited by James E. Bartlett III, Salvatore Di Misa, and Elina Tsapouri.

We check the following sources daily: Federal Register, Congressional Record, Commerce/AES, Commerce/BIS, DHS/CBP, DOE/NRC, DOJ/ATF, DoD/DSS, DoD/DTSA, FAR/DFARS, State/DDTC, Treasury/OFAC, White House, and similar websites of Australia, Canada, U.K., and other countries and international organizations.  Due to space limitations, we do not post Arms Sales notifications, Denied Party listings, or Customs AD/CVD items. To subscribe, click here.

Last week’s highlights of The Daily Bugle included in this edition are:

  1. DHS/CBP: “Changes to AGOA Designations for the Democratic Republic of Congo; Extension of Duty-Free Rates for Products from Israel; and Reduction of EU Duty Rates”; Monday, 4 Jan 2021; Item #6
  2. Hong Kong TID: “Air Transshipment Cargo Exemption Scheme for Specified Strategic Commodities: List of Valid Registrants (1 Jan 2021); Monday, 4 Jan 2021; Item #10
  3. Commerce/BIS: “Chemical Weapons Convention Regulations and the Export Administration Regulations: Additions to Schedule 1(A) of the Annex on Chemicals to the Chemical Weapons Convention”; Thursday, 7 Jan 2021; Item #1
  4. Commerce/BIS Amends EAR to Clarify ECCN 1C991; Thursday, 7 Jan 2021; Item #2
  5. UK ECJU: “Changes to Export Control Legislation and Licensing”; Friday, 8 Jan 2021; Item #8

 

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DHS/CBP: “Changes to AGOA Designations for the Democratic Republic of Congo; Extension of Duty-Free Rates for Products from Israel; and Reduction of EU Duty Rates”

(Source: DHS/CBP)

 

This message is to inform the trade community of the following modifications pursuant to Presidential Proclamation 10128 (PP 10128) issued on December 22, 2020 and published in the Federal Register (85 FRN 85491) on December 29, 2020. The modifications include the reinstatement of the Democratic Republic of Congo as an African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA) beneficiary and designation as a lesser developed beneficiary (LDB) sub-Saharan African country; the extension of the US-Israel Free Trade Agreement on certain agricultural products, and duty reductions for select tariff numbers negotiated under the European Union Agreement.

 

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO (DRC)

Effective January 1, 2021, the DRC is reinstated and designated as a lesser developed beneficiary (LDB) sub-Saharan African country under section 112(c) of the AGOA.  In order to reflect this designation in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), the general note 16(a) to the HTSUS is modified to include the DRC on the list of beneficiary sub-Saharan countries and note 2(d) to subchapter XIX of chapter 98 of the HTSUS as a qualifying lesser developed beneficiary sub-Saharan African country.  

Goods imported from the DRC entered for consumption, or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption, on or after January 1, 2021, 12:01 AM EST are eligible to claim preferential tariff treatment under AGOA, by placing the Special Program Indicator (SPI) ‘D’ before the eligible tariff number.  The goods must meet the 35% value-added rule and all applicable AGOA requirements. 

Textile and apparel goods are not eligible for entry under subchapter XIX of chapter 98 of the HTSUS until the USTR has determined that the DRC has adopted an effective visa system and made significant progress towards implementing Customs procedures in line with AGOA requirements.

CBP will complete the ACE programming of the DRC changes on January 14, 2021.  Importers may file a Post Summary Correction (PSC) or file a protest (pursuant to 19 USC § 1514) to claim duty refunds on eligible entries filed on January 1, 2021 thru January 14, 2021.

 

US-ISRAEL FREE TRADE AGREEMENT

PP 10128 extends the US-Israel Free Trade Agreement benefits on Agricultural Products through December 31, 2021.

Effective January 1, 2021, 12:01 AM EST, eligible agricultural goods (as identified in Annex I of 85 FRN 85491) imported from Israel and entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption, may claim preferential tariff treatment into the United States. 

CBP has completed ACE programming for these duty modifications.

 

TARIFF DUTY REDUCTION

The United States entered into an agreement with the European Union on November 20, 2020.  As a result, PP 10128 modifies the duty rates for six tariff items identified in Annex II of 85 FRN 85491.  The six tariff subheadings subject to this duty reduction are the following: 1604.20.05, 3214.90.50, 3601.00.00, 7013.41.50, 9613.11.00, and 9613.90.80.  These duty reductions are retroactive as of August 1, 2020 and applicable for unliquidated entry summaries or entry summaries not final as of August 1, 2020.   Importers may file a Post Summary Correction (PSC) or file a protest (pursuant to 19 USC § 1514) to claim duty refunds on eligible entries.

Further duty reductions on the following five tariff subheadings will be effective on August 1, 2021 for goods entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption: 1604.20.05, 3214.90.50, 3601.00.00, 9613.11.00, and 9613.90.80.  CBP has completed ACE programming for these duty modifications.  … 

REFERENCE DOCUMENTS  … 

 

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Hong Kong TID: “Air Transshipment Cargo Exemption Scheme for Specified Strategic Commodities: List of Valid Registrants (1 Jan 2021)

(Source: Hong Kong Trade, 4 Jan 2021) [Excerpts]

 

The Trade and Industry Department implements the Air Transhipment Cargo Exemption Scheme for Specified Strategic Commodities (SCTREX) (referred below as “the Scheme”) to facilitate the air transshipment of specified strategic commodities through Hong Kong.  Registrants under the Scheme are, subject to certain conditions, exempted from licensing requirements under the Import and Export Ordinance (Cap. 60) and the Import and Export (Strategic Commodities) Regulations (Cap. 60G) (referred below as “the Regulations”) in respect of air transshipment cargo of specified strategic commodities. …

 

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Commerce/BIS: “Chemical Weapons Convention Regulations and the Export Administration Regulations: Additions to Schedule 1(A) of the Annex on Chemicals to the Chemical Weapons Convention”

(Source: Federal Register) [Excerpts]

 

86 FR 936: Rule

* AGENCY: Bureau of Industry and Security, Commerce.

* ACTION: Final rule.

* SUMMARY: The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) is publishing this final rule to amend the Chemical Weapons Convention Regulations (CWCR) and the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to reflect recent additions to Schedule 1(A) of the Annex on Chemicals to the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction, also known as the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). This final rule also amends the definition of “production” in the CWCR to clarify the scope of this term as it applies to declarations regarding the production of “Schedule 1,” “Schedule 2,” or “Schedule 3” chemicals.

* DATES: This rule is effective January 7, 2021.

 

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Commerce/BIS Amends EAR to Clarify ECCN 1C991

(Source: Federal Register) [Excerpts]

 

86 FR 944: Rule

* AGENCY: Bureau of Industry and Security, Commerce.

* ACTION: Final rule.

* SUMMARY:

The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) is amending the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to clarify the scope of the export controls that apply to certain vaccines, consistent with the vaccine release (i.e., exclusion) note contained in the Australia Group (AG) “List of Human and Animal Pathogens and Toxins for Export Control” common control list, as updated by a decision made at the AG Plenary meeting held in Paris, France, in June 2019. The AG is a multilateral forum consisting of 42 participating countries and the European Union that maintain export controls on a list of chemicals, biological agents, and related equipment and technology that could be used in a chemical or biological weapons program. The AG periodically reviews items on its control list to enhance the effectiveness of participating governments’ national controls and to achieve greater harmonization among these controls. 

* DATES: This rule is effective January 7, 2021.

* SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

The AG specifically excludes certain vaccines from control under its “List of Human and Animal Pathogens and Toxins for Export Control” and the associated Warning List. However, prior to the June 2019 Plenary changes to this AG common control list, it was not clear if the release note therein applied not only to vaccines containing those human and animal pathogens and toxins identified on the list, but also to vaccines containing the genetic elements and genetically modified organisms identified therein. Recent changes to this AG common control list, based in part on a decision made at the June 2019 Plenary meeting, clarify that this release note applies to vaccines containing the genetic elements and genetically modified organisms identified on this list, as well as vaccines containing the viruses, bacteria, and toxins identified on this list.

Specifically, this rule amends Export Control Classification Number (ECCN) 1C991 on the Commerce Control List (CCL) to indicate that it includes vaccines containing, or designed for use against, any of the items identified in ECCN 1C351, 1C353 or 1C354. Prior to the effective date of this final rule, ECCN 1C991 indicated that it controlled vaccines “against” such items, but was not specific about whether all vaccines “containing” such items were controlled, irrespective of whether the vaccines were designed for use “against” such items.

This rule also expands the scope of medical products controlled under ECCN 1C991 to include those containing genetically modified organisms and genetic elements described in ECCN 1C353.a.3. In addition, this rule clarifies the definition of “immunotoxin” that appears in ECCN 1C351 and ECCN 1C991 and removes the definition of “subunit” from ECCN 1C351. Finally, this rule renumbers ECCN 1C991.c and .d by listing medical products that are subject to chemical/biological (CB) controls, as well as anti-terrorism (AT) controls, under ECCN 1C991.c and listing medical products that are subject only to AT controls under ECCN 1C991.d.  …

 

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UK ECJU: “Changes to Export Control Legislation and Licensing”

(Source: UK Export Control Joint Unit, 8 Jan 2021)

 

Read here the full document.

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