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NEWS RELEASE 04-045; MAY 24, 2004 May 24, 2004
News Release 04-045
Inv. No. 332-459

ITC RELEASES REPORT ON LIKELY EFFECTS OF DUTY-FREE ENTRY FOR GOODS FROM GSP-ELIGIBLE COUNTRIES

The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) today released a public version of its confidential report on the probable economic effect of providing duty free treatment under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP).

The investigation, Advice Concerning Possible Modifications to the U.S. Generalized System of Preferences, 2003 Review (Investigation No. 332-459), was requested by the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR).

As requested, the ITC, an independent, nonpartisan, factfinding federal agency, provided advice as to whether any industry in the United States is likely to be adversely affected by the addition of mufflers and exhaust pipes for motor vehicles and wheel rims for bicycles imported under HTS subheadings 8708.92.50 and 8714.92.10, respectively. The Commission also provided advice as to whether any industry in the United States is likely to be adversely affected by the removal from eligibility for duty-free treatment under the GSP for adipic acid, HTS subheading 2917.12.10, and ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene resins, HTS subheadings 3901.10.00 (pt.) and 3901.20.00 (pt.); PET film, HTS subheading 3920.62.00; and PET bottle-grade resins in primary forms, HTS subheading 3907.60.0010.

The study also provided advice as to the adverse impacts of the granting of a waiver of the competitive need limits for fancy leather from Argentina, HTS subheading 4107.11.80; for cookware from Thailand, HTS subheading 7615.19.30; and for camcorders from Indonesia, HTS subheading 8525.40.80. "Competitive need limits" represent the maximum import level of a product that is eligible for duty-free treatment under the GSP; once the limit is reached, trade is considered "competitive," benefits are no longer needed, and imports of the article become ineligible for GSP treatment, unless a waiver is granted. With respect to the competitive need limit in section 503(c)(2)(A)(i)(I) of the 1974 Act, the Commission, as requested, will use the dollar value limit of $110,000,000.

The ITC submitted a confidential version of the report to the USTR on May 12, 2004. As requested, the report released today by the ITC contains only the unclassified sections, with any business confidential information deleted.

Advice Concerning Possible Modifications to the U.S. Generalized System of Preferences, 2003 Review (Investigation No. 332-459, USITC publication 3696, May 2004) will be posted in the Publications area of the ITC Internet site at www.usitc.gov. A printed copy may be requested by calling 202-205-1809 or by writing the Office of the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20436. Requests may also be made by fax to 202-205-2104.

ITC general factfinding investigations, such as this one, cover matters related to tariffs or trade. The investigations are generally conducted at the request of USTR, the Senate Committee on Finance, or the House Committee on Ways and Means; the ITC may also self-initiate investigations. The resulting reports convey the Commission's objective findings and independent analyses on the subjects investigated. The Commission makes no recommendations on policy or other matters in its general factfinding reports. Upon completion of each investigation, the ITC submits its findings and analyses to the requester. General factfinding investigation reports are subsequently released to the public, unless they are classified by the requester for national security reasons.

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