September 14, 2001
News Release 01-118
Inv. No. 332-433


The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has launched an investigation to assess the probable economic effect of the elimination of U.S. tariffs on footwear imported from Mexico under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The investigation, NAFTA: Probable Economic Effect of Accelerated Tariff Elimination (Inv. No. 332-433), was requested by the U.S. Trade Representative. In his request letter, the USTR stated that pursuant to the provisions of the NAFTA, the United States and Mexico have agreed to enter into consultations to consider accelerating the elimination of the import duty for certain footwear articles.

The NAFTA Implementation Act authorizes the President to proclaim any accelerated schedule for duty elimination that the United States may agree to with Mexico or Canada, subject to the consultation and layover requirements of the Act. The President is required to obtain the ITC's advice concerning the proposed action.

The ITC, an independent, nonpartisan, factfinding federal agency, will provide advice to the President and the USTR concerning the probable economic effect of the proposed action on the domestic footwear industry producing like or directly competitive articles, workers in these industries, and on consumers of the affected goods. The ITC's report will be submitted to the USTR by October 12, 2001. A public version of this report will be issued as soon as possible thereafter.

The ITC will not hold a public hearing in connection with this investigation, but it welcomes written submissions (one original and 14 copies) from interested parties for the record. Written submissions should be filed at the earliest practical time but no later than 5:15 p.m. on September 28, 2001, with the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20436. The Commission's rules do not authorize filing submissions with the Secretary by facsimile or electronic means, and all written submissions, except for confidential business information, will be available for public inspection.

Further information on the scope of this investigation and appropriate submissions is available in the ITC's notice of investigation, dated September 10, 2001, which may be obtained from the ITC Internet site ( or by contacting the Office of the Secretary at 202-205-2000.

ITC 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 Senate Committee on Finance or the House Committee on Ways and Means. 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 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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