International

International Trade

Blog

http://internationaltrade.foxrothschild.com/

The laws and regulations governing international trade are especially complex and can be overwhelming for companies doing business across national borders. The rapidly expanding global marketplace, however, has made compliance more important than ever. Failure to heed these laws can have serious and lasting consequences as dire as criminal charges against the company and individual employees. This blog will offer a steady stream of updates on a broad range of international trade issues, including customs/import compliance, export controls and sanctions, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and cross-border contracts.

Recent Blog Posts

  • U.S. Lifts Sudan Sanctions On October 12, 2017, the United States lifted its general commercial embargo on Sudan. Because Sudan has played a role in international terrorism, the U.S. has maintained a comprehensive embargo against Sudan since 1997. These sanctions were contained in executive orders and the Sudanese Sanctions Regulations (SSR). Following a 16-month diplomatic effort, the United States removed sanctions that had prohibited U.S. persons from engaging in or facilitating most transactions that involved Sudan or its government. U.S. persons may now engage in... More
  • CIT Finds Shoe Importer Was “Grossly Negligent” In Classifying Products In recent decision, the Court of International Trade entered a $1.6 million award against shoe importer, Sterling Footwear, Inc. (“Sterling”), for what it found to be grossly negligent product misclassification.  Granting the U.S. Government’s motion for summary judgment in part, the Court left open the possibility of additional penalties of up to $20.8 million once the liability of Sterling’s owner and a related company  are determined at trial. The Court found that in 337 entries between 2007 and 2009, Sterling had misclassified... More
  • CIT Finds that Home Depot Doorknobs Are Locks In a recent opinion, the Court of International Trade upheld the determination by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that certain doorknobs imported by home-improvement retailer Home Depot are properly classified as locks and subject to a higher duty than other doorknobs. In essence, the dispute came down to a question of whether a doorknob that locks is (i) a doorknob or (ii) a lock. Doorknobs are classified heading 8302 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) which covers... More
  • Gray Market Distributor Challenges CBP’s Grant of Protection to Duracell In a recent post, we discussed the lawsuit brought by battery behemoth Duracell against a company that it was importing “gray market” versions of its copper-topped products. In that action, Duracell has argued that the warranty that comes with its U.S. batteries is ten times longer than the warranty that comes with the batteries that Duracell sells to electronic manufacturers and which the defendant sought to import.  Accordingly, Duracell argued that this material difference in the warranty should permit it... More
  • U.S. Investigation of Steel Flanges from China and India   On Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Commerce began its preliminary phase antidumping and countervailing duty investigations pursuant to the Tariff Act of 1930. The Department of Commerce is looking into whether the imports of stainless steel flanges from China and India, which are alleged to be sold in the U.S. at less than fair value and alleged to be subsidized by the Chinese and Indian governments, are materially injuring the U.S. industry. The U.S. antidumping law imposes special tariffs to counteract... More
  • Second Circuit Limits FCPA Enforcement Tools In its recent decision in United States v. Allen, 16-cr-898, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals held that testimony which is compelled pursuant to laws of foreign jurisdictions violates the Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination when used as part of a U.S. prosecution.  The ruling may have a far-reaching impact on the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) enforcement of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which often rely on evidence obtained by foreign investigators. In US v. Allen, the defendants were accused of... More
  • OFAC Settles Iran Sanctions Claims On Thursday, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) announced a $415,350 settlement agreement with COSL Singapore Ltd. (“COSL”). The parties settled a potential civil liability claim for 55 apparent violation of the Iranian Transactions and Sanctions Regulations, 31 C.F.R. Part 560 (ITSR), which took place between October 2011 and February 2013. COSL is a Singapore-based subsidiary of a Chinese oil field service company. It has several offshore drilling oil rigs and enters into charter agreements... More
  • Renegotiation of NAFTA Can Start This Week President Trump can officially begin renegotiating NAFTA tomorrow, August 16th. The negotiation process can only start 90 days after President Trump officially notified Congress of this intention, which took place on May 18th. The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) became law in 1994. NAFTA is a comprehensive trade agreement that sets the rules of trade and investment between the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. NAFTA created one of the world’s largest free trade zones. Pursuant to the deal, each NAFTA country... More
  • NAFTA and Natural Gas On the firm’s Energy Law Today blog, Fox Partner Mark V. Santo discusses the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and its potential impact on the natural gas trade between the U.S. and Mexico. Copyright: antartis / 123RF Stock Photo “Mexico imports nearly all of its natural gas from the U.S. and exports to Mexico are expected to double by 2019, with Texas fields being the primary source. At least 17 pipelines currently carry four billion cubic feet of... More
  • Trump Administration Tightens Cuba Sanctions Co-Author, Santos Ramos On June 16, 2017, President Trump announced changes to United States’ Cuban sanctions regime which will stem the tide of liberalization that Obama Administration set in motion 2014. While the regulatory changes have not yet taken effect, the Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) released updated its online resources to reflect the Trump Administration’s forthcoming changes.  Most notably, under the announced changes, individual “people-to-people” travel will no longer be permitted and any trade or business... More