U.S. Forced Labor Prevention Efforts a Success – Review Results

Trade Update • July 9, 2024

CBP Officer Working at Computer w/ CBP Office of Trade Logo

he fight against forced labor is crucial for moral, economic, and national security reasons. Eliminating goods made with forced labor from U.S. supply chains upholds American values of free and fair trade, the rule of law, and respect for human dignity, while also preventing unfair competition for compliant U.S. and international manufacturers.

The Role of DHS and CBP

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), through U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), plays a pivotal role in enforcing laws that prohibit the import of goods made with forced labor.

In its role as Chair of the interagency Forced Labor Enforcement Task Force (FLETF), DHS leads thirteen federal agencies leveraging their collective authorities, expertise and resources to address the global challenge of prohibiting the importation of goods mined, produced, or manufactured wholly or in part with forced labor.

The Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA)

With the passage of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA), the FLETF has developed and implemented strategies to prevent goods made with forced labor, specifically targeting products from the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR). The UFLPA’s enforcement mechanism, established in June 2022, assumes that certain goods are produced with forced labor unless proven otherwise. This has become a crucial part of U.S. efforts to eradicate forced labor and hold accountable those responsible for crimes against humanity in the XUAR.

Impact on Global Supply Chains

The enforcement of the UFLPA has led to significant changes in global sourcing strategies. Companies are enhancing their due diligence programs to ensure compliance, leading to more resilient and sustainable supply chains. This shift has spurred innovation and growth among trusted trading partners.

Expanding the UFLPA Entity List

The UFLPA prohibits importing goods from entities on its Entity List. Since June 2022, CBP has reviewed over 9,000 shipments valued at more than $3.4 billion, covering a wide range of products. The UFLPA Entity List now includes 68 entities, many added in the past 13 months, representing various industry sectors and regions in China. This expansion helps responsible industry partners avoid entities involved in forced labor.

Sector-Specific Impacts

Solar Industry

U.S. polysilicon producers have responded to the demand for forced labor-free solar supply chains by entering into over $7 billion in long-term sales agreements and investing $575 million in increased production capacity. This enhances the U.S. ability to meet climate goals.

Textiles and Apparel

Enforcement efforts have led to a significant shift away from PRC-sourced cotton, with over 95% of U.S. apparel companies enhancing their supply chain due diligence using technology and verification tools.

Automotive Industry

Automakers are conducting comprehensive due diligence to exclude supplies with a higher risk of forced labor, ensuring goods imported to the U.S. are free from such inputs.

PVC in Flooring

U.S. imports of Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) products have declined by 48% as importers shift away from XUAR-sourced PVC, leading to new production capacities in the U.S., Mexico, India, and Vietnam.

Ensure your supply chains are compliant and free from forced labor. Collaborate with stakeholders, enhance due diligence, and support global efforts to eradicate forced labor from the market. Together, we can uphold human rights and promote fair trade. Questions about the UFLPA and forced labor enforcement, and if your products are affected? We are always here to help, contact us.


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