September 30, 2013
News Release 13-097
Inv. No. 332-534
Contact: Peg O'Laughlin, 202-205-1819

CBERA CONTINUES TO HAVE A SMALL BUT POSITIVE EFFECT ON BENEFICIARY COUNTRIES AND U.S. CONSUMERS; IMPORTS DECLINED IN 2012, SAYS USITC

The overall effect of the Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act (CBERA) on the U.S. economy continues to be negligible while the effect on U.S. consumers and beneficiary countries is small but positive, reports the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) in its publication Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act: Impact on U.S. Industries and Consumers and on Beneficiary Countries, Twenty-first Report, 2011-12.

The USITC, an independent, nonpartisan, factfinding federal agency, recently issued its 21st in a series of biennial reports monitoring imports under CBERA. The CBERA program, operative since January 1, 1984, affords preferential tariff treatment to most products of the 16 designated Caribbean and South American countries that received CBERA benefits during the period covered in the report. A seventeenth country, Panama, was a CBERA member until October of 2012 when the US-Panama FTA went into effect.

The USITC report covers the impact of CBERA, as modified, on the United States, with particular emphasis on calendar year 2012. CBERA requires the Commission to prepare a biennial report assessing both the actual and the probable future effect of CBERA on the U.S. economy generally, on U.S. industries, and on U.S. consumers. The report also covers the impact of the preference program on the beneficiary countries themselves. Following are highlights of the 2011-12 report.

Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act: Impact on U.S. Industries and Consumers and on Beneficiary Countries, Twenty-first Report, 2011-12 (Inv. No. 332-227, USITC Publication No. 4428, September 2013) is available at http://www.usitc.gov/publications/332/pub4428.pdf. The publication will also be available at federal depository libraries in the United States. A CD-ROM or printed copy of the report may be requested by emailing pubrequest@usitc.gov, calling 202-205-2000, or writing to the Office of the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street, SW, Washington, DC 20436. Requests may also be faxed to 202-205-2104.

USITC general factfinding investigations, such as this one, cover matters related to tariffs or trade and are generally conducted at the request of the U.S. Trade Representative, the House Committee on Ways and Means, or the Senate Committee on Finance. 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 USITC submits its findings and analyses to the requestor. General factfinding investigation reports are subsequently released to the public, unless they are classified by the requestor for national security reasons.

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