House Ways and Means Trade Subcommittee Chairman Dave Reichert, R-Wash., on Thursday introduced bipartisan legislation to renew the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) through 2020, after it expired at the end of 2017.
The renewal would activate on the 30th day after enactment, and provide retroactive benefits for any normally eligible GSP goods entered into U.S. commerce during the ongoing lapse in coverage.
Filings for retroactive liquidation or reliquidation would have to be filed with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) within 180 days of enactment, and would be required to contain sufficient information to enable the agency to “locate” the entry, or “reconstruct the entry if it cannot be located,” according to the bill text.
The legislation’s application of the terms “enter” and “entry” would cover withdrawals from warehouses for consumption.
Under the bill, the U.S. government would be generally required to pay any amounts owed, without interest, no later than 90 days after the date of liquidation or reliquidation.
The bill, which includes eight co-sponsors from both sides of the political aisle, also includes provisions introduced by Rep. Jackie Walorski, R-Ind., in October, that would peg approvals for GSP’s “504(d) waivers” to present-day production statistics.
Under that specific waiver process, product exclusions from competitive need limitations (CNLs) are automatically granted for a list of products not made in the U.S. as of Jan. 1, 1995, but only if a CNL would be based solely on imports of a good from a specific country exceeding 50 percent of the value of total imports of that good into the U.S. during any calendar year after 1995.
CNLs are a GSP mechanism by which duty-free treatment under the program is terminated for goods whose imports exceed certain statutorily outlined amounts.
Walorski’s language would strike the language pegging 504(d) waivers to 1995 production statistics, and instead make the waivers based on U.S. production in the three years preceding any applications for those waivers.
“American businesses, workers, and consumers depend on the GSP program to lower costs and keep America competitive in the global economy,” Walorski said in a statement. “This bipartisan bill updates and extends GSP and makes commonsense fixes to the ‘competitive need limitations’ process that will save manufacturers time and money better used to expand, innovate, and create jobs.”
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