7 Oct 2016
MTB Petition Submission and Consideration Rules Issued
The USITC has adopted interim regulations on the submission and consideration of petitions for duty suspensions and reductions under the American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act of 2016, which reformed the miscellaneous trade bill process. Under this rule, a petition may be filed by members of the public (generally, a firm, importer of record, manufacturer that uses the imported article, or a U.S. federal, state or local government entity) that can demonstrate that they are likely beneficiaries of duty suspensions or reductions. Petitions must be filed via the USITC’s secure web portal designated for this purpose and will not be accepted in paper or any other form. Petitioners may withdraw a petition at any time prior to the time the USITC transmits its final report to the House Ways and Means and Senate Finance committees. Petitioners may not amend a petition but instead must withdraw it and file a new one within the 60-day filing period.
Information that must be set forth in a petition includes the name and contact information of the petitioner; a description of the article, its uses and the U.S. industry that uses it; an estimate of the total value of the previous year’s imports of the article; a certification that the petitioner is a likely beneficiary; the names of the principal countries from which the article is imported as well as known importers and likely beneficiaries; a description of any domestic production; and a certification that the petitioner has not filed identical or overlapping petitions. The USITC will not likely recommend for inclusion in an MTB specified types of article descriptions, including those that contain “actual use” or “chief use” criteria, trademarked or similarly protected names, language describing goods that are illegal to import or covered by tariff-rate quotas, or language seeking to alter the tariff treatment or classification of a product.
The USITC is expected to publish on 14 October a notice of opportunity to file petitions, which must be filed within the following 60 days (i.e., by mid-December). The agency must publish all of the petitions that are timely filed and contain the required information, along with a request for public comments, on its website within another 30 days (i.e., by mid-January). Members of the public will have 45 days thereafter (i.e., by early March) to comment on the petitions and the USITC must make those comments available to the public on its website.
Revised Hearing Date in AD/CV Injury Probe of Geogrid Products
The USITC has revised the schedule for the final phase of its AD and CV injury investigations of biaxial integral geogrid products from mainland China. Specifically, the hearing in these investigations will be held on 21 December instead of 20 December. All other aspects of the schedule remain unchanged.
Section 337 Investigation of Portable Electronic Devices Terminated
The USITC instituted on 11 May a Section 337 investigation of certain portable electronic devices and components thereof from various sources, including mainland China. The notice of investigation directed the administrative law judge to hold an early evidentiary hearing, find facts, and issue an early decision as to whether the asserted claims of the U.S. patent under scrutiny recited patent-eligible subject matter, as required by law. The ALJ found the asserted claims of the patent in question invalid and the USITC has determined to terminate this investigation.