EMBARGOED: Until Tuesday, February 1, 2000
News Release 00-016
Inv. No. 332-237


The interdependence among manufacturing facilities in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean Basin region is growing, reports the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) in its report Production Sharing: Use of U.S. Components and Materials in Foreign Assembly Operations, 1995-1998.

The ITC, an independent, nonpartisan, factfinding federal agency, has published the report annually since 1986. This year's report focuses on the motor vehicle, television receiver, and apparel industries and examines cross-border rationalization of production and other strategies employed by those industries to reduce costs or to achieve other competitive advantages in U.S. and third-country markets. Highlights follow.

The ITC is changing its method of reporting on production sharing and related topics, and this will be its last formal annual report on production sharing. Data on imports entered under the production-sharing provisions (HTS 9802.00.60 - .90) now significantly understate production-sharing activity and the use of U.S. components in foreign assembly operations. These reporting limitations will likely become more pronounced for 1999 because most goods imported from production-sharing operations now qualify for duty-free treatment under other agreements or trade preference programs. The ITC will continue to report informally on cross-border integration of manufacturing and related topics in other publications, as appropriate, and plans to report annual statistics on trade under the production-sharing provisions in Industry Trade and Technology Review, a quarterly publication of the ITC's Office of Industries. The ITC will also provide expanded coverage for these data by late spring on its Internet-based interactive tariff and trade database, the DataWeb http://dataweb.usitc.gov).

Production Sharing: Use of U.S. Components and Materials in Foreign Assembly Operations, 1995-1998 (Inv. No. 332-237, USITC Publication 3265, December 1999) will be posted on the ITC's Internet server at www.usitc.gov/reports.htm (search by title or publication number). A printed copy may be requested by calling 202-205-1809 or by writing to the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street, SW, Washington, DC 20436. Requests may also be faxed to 202-205-2104.

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