December 23, 2002
News Release 02-117
Inv. No. 332-447


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) for selected articles from Argentina, the Philippines, and Turkey, entitled Advice Concerning Possible Modifications to the U.S. Generalized System of Preferences.

The ITC, an independent, nonpartisan, factfinding federal agency, submitted a confidential version of the report to the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) on December 3, 2002. The USTR requested that the ITC issue a public version of the report containing only the unclassified sections, with any business confidential information deleted.

The ITC instituted the investigation on September 4, 2002, at the request of the U.S. Trade Representative. As requested, the ITC provided advice as to whether any industry in the United States is likely to be adversely affected by the addition to the GSP of certain cheeses, peanuts, dairy preparations, pineapple and grape juices, grape must, other rosin and resin acids, certain ferroalloys, and ball and tapered roller bearings. These articles are imported under Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) subheadings 0406.90.41, 1202.10.40, 1202.20.40, 1901.90.42, 2008.11.25, 2008.11.45, 2009.41.20, 2009.49.20, 2009.61.00, 2009.69.00, 2204.30.00, 3806.90.00, 7202.99.50, 8482.10.10, 8482.10.50, and 8482.20.00.

The study also provided advice as to the adverse impacts of the granting of a waiver of the "competitive need limits" specified in section 503(c)(2)(A) of the Trade Act of 1974 with respect to the following: from Argentina, peanuts and grape juice imported under HTS subheadings 1202.20.40, 2008.11.25, 2009.61.00, 2009.69.00; from the Philippines, pineapple juice imported under HTS subheading 2009.49.20; and from Turkey, gold or platinum jewelry imported under HTS subheading 7113.19.50. "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. As requested, with respect to the competitive need limits, the Commission used the dollar value limit of $100,000,000.

Advice Concerning Possible Modifications to the U.S. Generalized System of Preferences (Investigation No. 332-447, USITC publication 3567, December 2002) will be posted in the Publications and Reports area of the ITC Internet site at 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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