BREAKING NEWS: US Department of Commerce Starts Accepting Tariff Exclusion Requests - Global Trade Magazine
  March 19th, 2018 | Written by

BREAKING NEWS: US Department of Commerce Starts Accepting Tariff Exclusion Requests

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  • The forms for submitting tariff exclusion requests, and objections to exclusion requests, are now available.
  • Ross: “These procedures will allow the administration to further hone these tariffs.”
  • Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross will evaluate requests for exclusion to the steel and aluminum tariffs.

The US Department of Commerce announced today its procedures for excluding products from the recently announced tariffs on steel and aluminum product imports. As directed by President Donald Trump, the department published the procedures in the Federal Register and just started accepting exclusion requests from US industry.

The forms for submitting exclusion requests, and objections to specific exclusion requests, are available here for steel and here for aluminum. The steel docket number is BIS-2018-0006 and the aluminum docket number is BIS-2018-0002.

“These procedures will allow the administration to further hone these tariffs to ensure they protect our national security while also minimizing undue impact on downstream American industries,” said Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.

Ross, in consultation with other administration officials, will evaluate exclusion requests, taking into account national security considerations. The secretary will consider whether a product is produced in the United States of a satisfactory quality or in a sufficient and reasonably available amount. A single response to each exclusion request will be posted on the regulations.gov website.

On March 8, 2018, the president imposed a 25-percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent-tariff on aluminum imports, with exemptions for Canada and Mexico, under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962. The President’s Section 232 decisions are the result of investigations led by the Commerce Department. US Customs and Border Protection will begin collecting the tariffs on March 23, 2018.

Only individuals or organizations using steel or aluminum articles identified in Presidential Proclamations 9704 and 9705 and engaged in business activities in the United States may submit exclusion requests. Exclusion requests will be posted for a 30-day comment period on regulations.gov.

Separate exclusion requests must be submitted for each unique steel or aluminum product import. For an exclusion request to be considered, the requester must provide a full factual description of the specific product, its properties, and its quantity.

Any individual or organization in the United States may file objections to steel or aluminum exclusion requests, but the Commerce Department will only consider information directly related to the submitted exclusion request that is the subject of the objection. Organizations submitting an objection filing on an exclusion request should provide specific information on the product that their company can provide that is comparable to the steel or aluminum product that is the subject of the exclusion request.

Organizations filing an objection should also provide factual information on the production capabilities at steel or aluminum manufacturing facilities that they operate in the United States; the availability and delivery time of the products that they manufacture relative to the specific steel or aluminum product that is subject to an exclusion request; and discussion on the suitability of its product for the application or applications identified by the exclusion requestor.

Both the exclusion requests and objection filings will be available for public viewing on regulations.gov. Processing of exclusion requests normally will not exceed 90 days, including adjudication of objections submitted on exclusion requests.

For questions concerning the exclusion process, contact steel232@bis.doc.gov or 202-482-5642 for steel-related queries and aluminum232@bis.doc.gov or 202-482-4757 for aluminum-related queries.


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