The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) announced on October 11, 2019 the opening of its system for accepting petitions for tariff relief under the American Competitiveness Act of 2016 (commonly referred to as the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill or MTB). The MTB allows U.S. importers to petition for duty-free or reduced-duty treatment of imported products that are unavailable domestically. It is important to note that the duty relief afforded under the MTB applies to customs duties and not tariffs imposed on imports pursuant to Section 232 or 301 tariffs.
Interested parties may file petitions for relief through the ITC’s MTB portal for the next 60 days. All petitions must be submitted no later than 5:15 p.m. EST on December 10, 2019. Nevertheless, we strongly encourage interested parties to submit MTB petitions earlier. After reviewing the petitions and comments filed, the ITC will compile and submit a report with its recommendations to the House Ways and Means Committee and Senate Finance Committee, which must pass the MTB in order for the three-year duty suspensions to take effect. If signed into law, the MTB exemptions may become effective January 1, 2021, with an expiration date of December 31, 2024. The timeline for the process can be found here.
In making its recommendations and compiling its report, the ITC will consider the following factors: (1) whether there is any domestic production of the article; (2) whether the duty suspension is administrable by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP); (3) whether the estimated loss of revenue which will result from the duty suspension or reduction exceeds $500,000 and (4) whether the duty suspension or reduction will be available to any person importing the article.
Located on the ITC website is an information page that provides documents that outline the process and offer a sample petition submission as a reference. To see the page, click here.
To see the published Federal Register Notice, click here.
For additional information concerning the MTB petition process or to assess whether your business might be able to take advantage of this duty savings opportunity, please contact Robert Stang, Cortney Morgan, or Nithya Nagarajan of Husch Blackwell’s International Trade and Supply Chain team.