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Weekly Trade Brief: October 19-23, 2020

Posted October 23, 2020

A weekly roundup of news reports, government announcements, and other information about current and emerging developments in international trade and customs compliance. 

U.S. Department of Justice Seal

DOJ Files Motion for Case Management Procedures in Section 301 Tariff Refund Litigation

The Department of Justice filed a motion before the U.S. Court of International Trade on Monday in the matter of HMTX Industries LLC, et al. v. United States of America, et al. asking that the CIT adopt case management procedures to administer not only this case but also the approximately 3,600 complaints filed so far. DOJ has asked the Court to automatically stay all pending cases and wants to establish certain pleadings as “test cases” and to treat all submissions in those cases as filed in the others.

USPS Delivery Truck

Government Watchdog Knocks Postmaster General’s Cost-Cutting Initiatives

A new report details a dramatic and lasting slowdown in mail delivery after former logistics executive Louis DeJoy became postmaster general. The report by the U.S. Postal Service’s inspector general says actions DeJoy initiated or which were accelerated after he took office in June resulted in widespread pileups of mail and a continuing drop in on-time delivery performance.

Aluminum Foil Roll

Commerce Initiates AD/CVD Investigations of Aluminum Foil From Five Countries

The U.S. Department of Commerce initiated new antidumping and countervailing duty investigations this week to determine whether aluminum foil from Armenia, Brazil, Oman, Russia, and Turkey are being dumped in the U.S. market, and to determine if producers in Oman and Turkey are being unfairly subsidized.

Joe Biden (going through door)

Biden Would Smooth Disruptions to Global Trading System

A potential victory by Joe Biden in the upcoming presidential election wouldn’t usher in a new round of global trade liberalization, according to a panel of experts, but there’s much he could do to smooth some of the disruptions to global commerce caused by Trump’s “America First” agenda, they write in this article from the Eurasia consultancy.

Japan & UK Flags 

Britain Signs First Post-Brexit Trade Deal With Japan

Just four and a half months since negotiations started, Britain and Japan formally signed a trade agreement on Friday, marking the UK’s first big post-Brexit deal on trade. British officials said the deal means 99% of its exports to Japan would be tariff-free, and that it could eventually boost trade annually by £15.2 billion. The agreement eliminates Britain’s tariffs on Japanese cars in stages to zero in 2026, which is the same as in the Japan-EU trade agreement. 

Farmer looking at phone with tractor in background

Agricultural Subsidies: Everyone’s Doing It

Researchers behind the OECD’s “Agricultural Policy Monitoring and Evaluation 2020” report found that the 54 countries studied provide over $700 billion a year in total support to the agricultural sector. Click here to read Global Trade magazine’s recent deep dive on the issue that looks at the various support programs offered by different countries around the world.

WTO Logo (stone)

Revitalizing the World Trade Organization

A new report published by the Atlantic Council pitches an ambitious set of broad-based proposals to reform the World Trade Organization that both the U.S. and the European Union should be able to endorse, and ultimately work together to promote, says author Clete Willems, a former Trump administration trade official.



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