China Section 301 Product Exclusion Extension and Comments

At the end of December 2023, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced an additional extension to May 31, 2024 of 429 China Section 301 product exclusions, which had previously been extended through December 31, 2023. The 429 extended China Section 301 product exclusions include 352 previously-reinstated product exclusions and 77 COVID-related product exclusions.

USTR will also open a docket for public comments to support or oppose the further extension of particular 429 product exclusions beyond May 31, 2024. The USTR portal public docket will be open from January 22 to February 21, 2024. Comments should address the availability of products covered by the exclusion from sources outside China and efforts to, and any timeline for, re-sourcing from the U.S. or non-China countries. Similar to prior USTR China Section 301 comment opportunities, some business confidential information may be submitted, and separate comments must be submitted for each product exclusion.

Please contact Marshall Miller, Brian Murphy, Sean Murray, or Bryan Brown with questions or for assistance in preparing product exclusion extension comments. Clients may contact Brenda Zeller to obtain an updated version of the comprehensive spreadsheet we have prepared of all China Section 301 product exclusions to date, which includes expiration dates.

Potential January or February 2024 Government Shutdown

A partial government shutdown could occur as early as January 19, 2024, with the possibility of a full government shutdown occurring on February 2, 2024, if 12 appropriation bills cannot be passed by Congress. This comes after Congress implemented a stopgap spending measure in late 2023 to temporarily extend appropriations to federal agencies. If Congress cannot pass the appropriation bills by January 19, 2024, then a partial government shutdown will impact:

  • Agriculture, Rural Development, and the Food and Drug Administration
  • Energy and Water Development
  • Military Construction and Veteran Affairs
  • Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development

If the appropriation bills do not pass by February 2, 2024, the agencies associated with the eight remaining appropriations will also lose funding, creating a full government shutdown.

  • Defense
  • Commerce
  • Justice and Science
  • Financial Services and General Government
  • Homeland Security
  • Interior and Environment
  • Labor, Health and Human Services and Education
  • State and Foreign Operations

As most agency contingency plans have not changed since the possible September 30, 2023 government shutdown (see e.g., DHS, FDA and EPA lapse resources), we advise all clients to review our “What’s New” client briefings from September 27 and September 29 for further insight on how your business operations could be impacted.

For assistance in anticipation of, or during, the federal government shutdown, please contact Marshall Miller, Sean Murray, Brian Murphy, Bryan Brown, or Linda King.

E.U. Section 232 Steel and Aluminum Duties

On December 28, 2023, President Biden issued a Section 232 Steel Proclamation and Aluminum Proclamation continuing the tariff-rate quota (TRQ) system to exempt imports of European Union (E.U.) steel and aluminum from 25% and 10% Section 232 duties. These TRQs take effect from January 1, 2024 through December 31, 2025. The U.S. and E.U. will continue to negotiate on steel and aluminum issues.

There are no substantive changes to aggregate E.U. TRQ volumes. Section 232 product exclusions previously granted in FY 2021 and the first quarter of calendar year 2022 will be extended for two years. U.S. Customs has published further guidance on the 2024 E.U. TRQs.

The E.U. steel and aluminum Proclamations clarify that on-hand foreign-trade zone (FTZ) inventory in Privileged Foreign (PF) status before January 1, 2024 and entered thereafter is subject to the E.U. TRQ in effect at the time of consumption entry.

Please contact Marshall Miller, Brian Murphy, or Sean Murray with questions or for assistance.