Tuesday, March 27, 2012, The National Press Club, Washington, D.C.
Why We Need Manufacturing in the United States: Can we succeed without it? -- What Do We Need To Do On Trade? -- National Security, China, and the Decline in U.S. Manufacturing -- The Presidential Election: What are the candidates saying about manufacturing and what should they be saying? -- Prescriptions for Change: Which solutions would work best; and more!
For more information and to register, click here.
China Issues Its First Industry-Wide Plan To Promote Industrial Transformation And Upgrade Over The Next Five Years
The State Council of China recently issued its first mid- and long-term plan for the entire industrial sector, the Industrial Transformation and Upgrade Plan (2011-2015). The Plan is an important step, and the highest level guideline, for the Chinese government to carry out the industrial development goals and tasks set out in China’s National Economic and Social Development 12th Five-Year Plan, covering the period 2011-2015 (see the April 2011 issue of the Trade and Manufacturing Alert). More »
China Loses Raw Materials Case In World Trade Organization’s Appellate Body; Possible Implications For China’s Rare Earth Metals Quotas
The World Trade Organization (“WTO”) Appellate Body found that China’s export restrictions on a variety of raw materials violate WTO trade rules. The restrictions at issue limit China’s exports of bauxite, coke, fluorspar, magnesium, manganese, silicon carbide, silicon metal, and zinc. These products are used as inputs in the steel, aluminum, and chemicals industries. The Appellate Body’s report, circulated on January 30 and adopted by the WTO’s Dispute Settlement Body on February 22, largely affirmed the earlier WTO Panel Report circulated in July 2011. China will enter into negotiations with the complaining parties -- the United States, the European Union, and Mexico -- regarding how it will bring its measures into compliance with the Appellate Body’s report, bringing to a close this dispute that began in 2009.
Representatives of both the United States and the European Union commended this ruling, with U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk noting that the Chinese export restrictions not only make it more expensive for U.S. manufacturers to obtain the raw materials they need, but also artificially lower input costs for competing Chinese producers.
USTR Requests “Credible Real World Cases” Of China Forced Technology Transfer; Outreach Seen As A Prelude To Chinese Vice President Xi Jinpeng’s February Visit To Washington
Press reports in early February indicated that the National Association of Manufacturers (“NAM”) solicited information from member companies regarding “credible real world cases” of forced technology transfer in China. NAM contacted members at the request of the United States Trade Representative (“USTR”).
The term “forced technology transfer” describes the pressure to relinquish technology (including trade secrets) that is exerted by the Chinese government and Chinese companies on U.S. companies that seek market access in China, or as a pre-condition to performing certain operations there. Examples of actions to compel technology transfer include action or inaction by the Government of China in government approval processes, or pressure exerted by Chinese business partners directly. More »
New Methodology To End Zeroing Practice Announced
On April 16, the United States Department of Commerce (“Commerce”) will discontinue “zeroing” in calculating dumping margins in administrative reviews. This change in practice will be made effective for all preliminary determinations issued after April 16 as a result of WTO Appellate Body reports finding that “zeroing” in antidumping (“AD”) investigations and reviews is not consistent with the United States’ WTO obligations. The decision to comply with the WTO rulings was the result of consultations across the U.S. government including USTR, relevant congressional committees, and Commerce. More »
- Japan’s Interest In Joining Trans-Pacific Partnership – Augustine Lo – In November 2011, Japan expressed interest in joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership (“TPP”), an agreement among countries in the Pacific Rim that seeks to eliminate all tariffs and other barriers against the trade in goods and services among its members. Created in 2005, the TPP is presently comprised of the nine member states of Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States, and Vietnam. Malaysia and Singapore recently endorsed Japanese membership. More »
- Commerce Finds Critical Circumstances In Solar Panel Case – Richard Lutz – In January, Commerce made a preliminary determination of critical circumstances in the countervailing duty investigation of crystalline silicon photovoltaic cells and modules from China. The ruling requires Customs to suspend liquidation of all imports of covered products that entered into the United States 90 days prior to an affirmative preliminary determination. More »
- Congress Resists Trade Agency Restructuring – Rebecca Woodings – On January 13, President Obama announced his reorganization plan for executive branch trade agencies. The President proposed to reorganize USTR, the Small Business Administration, the Export-Import Bank, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, and much of the Department of Commerce. The President’s proposal noted that the six agencies currently have overlapping responsibilities that create redundancies and inefficiencies.
Within hours of the President’s announcement, Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) of the House Ways and Means Committee and Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) of the Senate Finance Committee issued a joint statement expressing concern about the plan. More »
Marble King, located in Paden City, West Virginia, is one of the last remaining marble producers in the United States. With a daily output of more than 1 million marbles, Marble King operates seven days a week, 365 days a year and uses 4.5 tons of recycled and discarded glass per day.
In an era when children’s toys tend toward the electronic, Marble King has successfully diversified its product. Its marbles are used in marble games, board games, decorative vases, spray paint cans, and other industrial applications. Marble King even has incorporated its marbles in an attractive jewelry line.
Unfair trade practices have adversely impacted U.S. marble manufacturers. Beri Fox, President of Marble King, has stated, “China pays no tariff to export marbles to the U.S. The [Chinese] government even subsidizes their costs.” As a result, the Chinese marble manufacturers’ operating costs are one-third to one-half less than the U.S. manufacturers. “We need a system that operates on balance and fair trade practices,” she concluded. “Don’t make us climb the mountain. Give us a level playing field.”
Ms. Fox is speaking at the Second Annual Conference on the Renaissance of American Manufacturing--Jobs, Trade and the Presidential Election on Tuesday, March 27, 2012 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on the topic What Do We Need To Do On Trade?
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