ON OUR DESKS

  • Analyzed outlook and implications of Quad cooperation and the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework
  • Engaged with CBP on UFLPA Implementation

How can we help you? Email any IBC counsellor for assistance or consult our issues list to find the expert you’re looking for.


WIBC DISCUSSIONS

In case you missed it:

 

  • U.S. relationship with ASEAN states with NSC Director for Southeast Asia and ASEAN Affairs Henrietta Levin (Contact: Scott Seaman)
  • Plans for the U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council with Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Europe and Eurasia David De Falco (Contact: Steve Ziehm)

Up next: Register for upcoming WIBC discussions here

WIBC discussions are open to WIBC members only. Not a member? Contact Christina for membership inquiries.


YOU NEED TO KNOW

Russia sanctions

The EU agreed to a sixth sanctions package on May 31 and published final implementing language on June 3. The package:

  • Bans Russian seaborn oil, while allowing pipelines to continue serving certain landlocked countries. Germany and Poland will separately restrict their own consumption
  • Bans EU persons from providing insurance services to Russian oil tankers and other maritime shipping
  • DeSWIFTs Sberbank, Credit Bank of Moscow, and the Russian Agricultural Bank
  • Bars certain Russian broadcasters from the bloc
  • Sanctions further malign actors

The United States announced additional sanctions designations on June 2 targeting sanctions evaders, providers of luxury services to Russian elites, and other parties linked to malign activity.

(Contact: Pat Sheehy)

 

Forced labor

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) held a public webinar on June 1 on the agency’s upcoming implementation of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act’s rebuttable presumption that all goods produced in whole or part in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China (the “XUAR”) are made with forced labor and therefore inadmissible to the United States. The presumption enters into force on June 21. The Forced Labor Enforcement Task Force, an interagency body chaired by DHS, is mandated to draft an enforcement strategy and guidance to importers by this date. CBP informed attendees that the agency intends to provide informal and non-binding guidance in the next “few days” but that the implementation will not be issued until June 21. CBP representatives stressed that the burden to ensure supply chains do not touch the XUAR falls on the importer and recommended that firms trace their inputs from China to the raw materials. 

(Contact: Pat Sheehy)

 

Digital trade

As the Biden Administration works to get the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) up and running, at least two countries participating in discussions on this new initiative are pursuing policy objectives that risk complicating U.S. plans to promote digital trade as a core component of the IPEF’s “fair and resilient trade” pillar. India is reportedly preparing to oppose efforts at the World Trade Organization’s 12th Ministerial Conference (MC) on June 12-15 to maintain a moratorium on customs duties on electronic transmissions (e-transmissions). This moratorium was extended at the previous MC for two years and applies to digitizable products such as photographic films, cinematographic films, printed matter, music, media, software, and video games. South Korea’s National Assembly is considering legislation that would require global content providers to sign mandatory contracts with domestic Internet service providers to standardize obligations to pay fees for using their networks. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce argues that this legislation, if enacted, would force foreign content providers to pay a “delivery fee” for their content to reach end users in Korea in addition to the “access fee” they pay now.

(Contact: Scott Seaman)

 

Quick takes

    • The United States and Taiwan announced a new “Initiative on 21st Century Trade” on June 1, deepening bilateral trade and economic relations and cooperation outside of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF), which Taiwan is not part of. 
    • Section 301 China tariff exclusions for 81 medical-care products needed to address COVID-19 were extended for an additional six months by USTR per a May 27 announcement. The tariff exclusions will now be effective through November 30, 2022. 
    • In a report issued May 31, the European Court of Auditors (ECA) found that the European Commission’s reported expenditures on climate action in 2014-2020 have been overstated by at least €72 bn (approximately $77 billion). The ECA is concerned that such accounting reliability issues could persist in the Commission’s reporting for the 2021-2027 period.
    • Following the first round of presidential elections in Colombia, leftist Senator and former M-19 guerilla, Gustavo Petro, and former mayor and populist businessman Rodolfo Hernández will face off in the second round of presidential elections on June 19. Both have proposed restoring relations with Venezuela and altering Colombia’s economic model.

NOTICES, BILLS & HEARINGS

Federal Register Notices

Legislation

House

  • H.R.7927 (Stewart, R-UT) To prohibit the use of funds to propose amendments to the International Health Regulations, the Global Pandemic Treaty, or any other agreement among World Health Organization member states.
  • H.R.7916 (Jackson, R-TX) Would prevent funds to be used to implement any U.S. obligations under the WHO’s Global Pandemic Treaty.
  • H.R.7901 (Schneider, D-IL) Would deny foreign tax credits or deductions with respect to taxes paid to the Russian or Belarusian governments.
  • H.R.7888 (Jackson, R-TX) To provide for United States security cooperation with Bahrain.

Senate

  • S.4334 (Menendez, D-NJ) Would support the advancement of inclusive economic growth, democratic governance, peace, and security in Colombia.
  • S.4331 (Duckworth, D-IL) Taiwan emergency military assistance plan.
  • S.4322 (Cotton, R-AR) Would require disclosure of foreign government subsidies in the premerger notification process.
  • S.4315 (Cornyn, R-TX) Would address the foreign production of precursor chemicals that are used for the illicit production of narcotics and psychotropic drugs and other controlled substances.
  • S.4313 (Cotton, R-AR) Would prohibit the use of the China operated digital currency payment system.

Hearings

House

Senate


WHO’S WHO

Arrivals

  • Dr. Adriana Debora Kugler, Executive Director to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
  • Dr. Aviva Aron-Dine, Deputy Assistant to the President for Economic Policy
  • ADM Linda Fagan, Commandant of the Coast Guard
  • Ambassador Marcia Bernicat, Director General of the Foreign Service
  • Ambassador Mike Hammer, State Department Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa

Want more scoops on personnel moves? Find the most recent Who’s Who here.


UPCOMING EVENTS

  • Deputy Secretary of State Sherman travels to South Korea, Philippines, Laos, and Vietnam, June 5-14
  • Summit of the Americas (Los Angeles), June 6-10
  • ASEAN Senior Officials Meeting, East Asia Summit (virtual), June 7-9
  • DFC Board of Directors public hearing, June 8
  • OECD Ministerial Council Meeting (Paris), June 8-10 
  • FAO/WHO Joint meeting on pesticide specifications (Rome), June 8-17
  • U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission hearing on competition in global supply chains (Washington), June 9

Looking farther ahead? Find the most recent full international events calendar here.