ON OUR DESKS
- Analyzed China’s energy, environmental, industrial, infrastructure, and public health policies (Scott Seaman, Ethan Knecht)
- Advised on status and trajectory on the effects of Russia’s war against Ukraine on international business, including sanctions and export controls against Russia and Belarus (Pat Sheehy)
- Reported and advised on priority trade hearings in Congress, with particular emphasis on Section 301 tariff exclusions, USMCA enforcement cases, and MTB/GSP trade promotion programs (Chris Benscher)
ICYMI: IBC has launched a new website, including a client portal where you can find information on upcoming WIBC discussions (for WIBC members only), past issues of the International Issues Update, and other resources. You should have received an email with the client portal password. Contact Christina for assistance.
How can we help you? Email any IBC counsellor for assistance or consult our issues list to find the expert you’re looking for.
In case you missed it:
- Food Security with Deputy Assistant USAID Administrator Mike Michener (Contact: Ethan Knecht)
- Indo-Pacific Economic Framework with Commerce Deputy Assistant Secretary for Asia Pamela Phan (Contact: Scott Seaman)
Up next: See calendar here
WIBC discussions are open to WIBC members only. Not a member? Contact Christina for membership inquiries.
YOU NEED TO KNOW
Russia sanctions: Treasury identified three new sectors subject to sanctions – aerospace, electronics, and maritime – and named an additional 21 entities and 13 individuals as Specially Designated Nations (SDNs). Designations include Joint Stock Company Mikron (Mikron), the largest Russian manufacturer and exporter of microelectronics.
With pressure growing for countries to stand with or against U.S. and European actions on Russia over its war in Ukraine, Deputy National Security Adviser Daleep Singh reportedly warned counterparts in New Delhi that while India importing Russian energy doesn’t currently violate U.S. sanctions, the United States “would not like to see anyone taking advantage of the situation” to increase energy supplies at “cross purposes” with U.S. strategic objectives. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov visited India, including to discuss possible ways to promote more Russian oil exports.
For further reporting and analysis on Russia-related sanctions and export control measures, please contact Pat Sheehy.
U.S. trade policy and Asia: U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai testified before the House Ways and Means and Senate Finance Committees, making no significant revelations on issues of high interest like China Section 301 tariff exclusions or details of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF).
Following the collapse of U.S.-China trade negotiations, Ambassador Tai did call for new tools focusing on making the United States more competitive with China but did not offer specifics.
In a bipartisan House letter issued March 30, 200 Members of Congress called for Taiwan’s inclusion in the IPEF.
Administration priorities in Latin America and Caribbean: U.S. Special Envoy for Climate Kerry met with Mexican President AMLO March 31 to discuss electricity reform. Kerry announced a special team led by U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Ken Salazar will analyze the reform.
During the first visit by a Jamaican prime minister to the White House in more than 25 years, Vice President Harris announced $20 million in U.S. economic aid to Jamaica. Prime Minister Holness also met with Secretary of State Blinken and highlighted his focus on human resources development and near-shoring.
For assistance and analysis related to the Americas, contact Ethan Knecht.
Sustainability and climate disclosures: Following the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) DATE release of proposed rules for mandatory climate disclosures, the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) issued on March 31 proposed standards for sustainability-related disclosure and climate-related disclosure. These proposals are part of a global effort to consolidate and harmonize ESG-related standards and potentially incorporate them into country-specific requirements.
ISSB is soliciting feedback on its proposals until July 29 and aims to issue its new standards this year. For assistance and analysis of ESG-related disclosure requirements, contact Scott Seaman.
- USTR’s 2022 National Trade Estimate provides updates on foreign trade barriers.
- The Senate passed the Ocean Shipping Reform Act, setting up negotiations to reconcile differences between the House and Senate versions of the bill.
- Under the ten-year U.S. Strategy to Prevent Conflict and Promote Stability, the United States announced partnerships with Haiti, Libya, Mozambique, Papua New Guinea, and five Coastal West African countries (Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, and Togo).
- The State Department’s Hong Kong Policy Act Report details worsening conditions for human rights and democratic freedoms.
- Uruguay narrowly approved pro-business economic reform measures by referendum.
NOTICES, BILLS & HEARINGS
Federal Register Notices
- Commerce/BIS – Reporting for Calendar Year 2021 on Offsets Agreements Related to Sales of Defense Articles or Defense Services to Foreign Countries or Foreign Firms
- USTR – Postponement of Meetings of the United States-Colombia Environmental Affairs Council and Environmental Cooperation Commission
- USTR – Notice of Reinstatement of Certain Exclusions: China’s Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation
- White House – Adjusting Imports of Steel Into the United States
- H.R.7340 (Meuser, R-PA) To provide for congressional oversight of certain sanctions imposed with respect to the Russian Federation.
- H.R.7325 (Fitzgerald, R-WI) To direct the Attorney General to prepare a report on the Department of Justice activities related to countering Chinese national security threats, and for other purposes.
- H.R.7302 (Pfluger, R-TX) To impose sanctions with respect to designated critical cyber threat actors, and for other purposes.
- Foreign Affairs: Russia-Ukraine-Eastern Europe Security Legislation April 5, 10:00 a.m.
- Financial Services: State of the International Finance System April 6, 10:00 a.m.
- Natural Resources Subcommittee on Water, Oceans, and Wildlife: Russian Seafood Ban/Traceability April 7, 1:00 p.m.
- Foreign Relations: Ambassadorial nominations (Australia, Korea, the Philippines, Norway) April 6, 10:00 a.m.
- Jennifer Knight Deputy Assistant Secretary for Textiles, Consumer Goods And Materials, Commerce Department
- Kenneth Wald U.S. Special Representative to the Biological Weapons Convention, State Department
- Vipin Narang Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Space Policy, Defense Department
- USTR Tai travels to Singapore April 4-6
- Senate and House in session April 4-8
- E.U. Economic and Financial Affairs Council April 5 (Brussels)
- U.N. Economic and Social Council tax cooperation meeting April 8 (New York)
- French presidential election April 10