Linda Sánchez on Customs Bill Headed to President’s Desk
Washington, DC- Representative Linda Sánchez (CA-38), Chairwoman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and a member of the Ways and Means Committee, today released the following statement on the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 (H.R. 644) which is headed to President Obama’s desk:
“I am pleased to see the bulk of a bill I have championed for many years, the ENFORCE Act, finally make it to the President’s desk. For far too long, U.S. manufacturers have been hurt by foreign competitors and their fraudulent schemes to avoid paying the duties they owe. This legislation finally gives some real teeth to our enforcement procedures and sends the right message to domestic manufacturers, employers, and workers that this Congress cares about customs enforcement.
“While this bill is a significant step in the right direction, there is still more work that needs to be done. I look forward to working with my colleagues to meaningfully address currency manipulation, climate change, and human trafficking. I am disappointed these provisions were not included in the final agreement. To me, these are no brainers.”
Congresswoman Sánchez co-authored the ENFORCE Act in the 111th, 112th, and 113th Congresses. Under the ENFORCE Act, domestic producers will be able to petition U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to investigate possible anti-dumping and countervailing duty evasions. The ENFORCE Act puts in place timelines for CBP to make preliminary and final determinations about whether an importer is engaged in duty evasion.
Antidumping duties are imposed when it is established that foreign goods are being sold (or “dumped”) in the U.S. at prices below the prices in the home market. Countervailing duties are imposed when foreign goods receive illegal subsidies that artificially hold down their prices. The duties are meant to even out these illegal practices so that American and foreign goods are competing on a more level playing field when it comes to prices. Those who work to evade these duties are not only breaking the law, they are hurting U.S. businesses and hardworking Americans.