Issue 28 | September 7, 2012

U.S. expresses concern over Argentina's trade restrictions on imports Argentina has in effect restrictive trade measures for all imported goods including demanding import licensing requirements and requiring importers to export as much as they import in order to stimulate trade. However, many of Argentina's trade measures have hampered the United States' attempts to increase trade with Argentina. U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk has shown concern that Argentina has not been complying with its World Trade Organization responsibilities and has announced that the U.S. government is seeking to meet with Argentina's government on the matter. Read more.  


Trade export seminar for Spanish-speaking businesses  In an effort to reach out to more businesses, the Port of Los Angeles will be hosting a trade export seminar in Spanish on Sept. 27 in the city of Wilmington.  Representatives from different agencies including the U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Small Business Administration, and Port of Los Angeles will present topics covering the basic logistics of exporting products and introducing products to the international market, following opening remarks by Rep. Janice Hahn.  The Trade Connect Export Workshop seminars have been very successful in educating small to medium-sized businesses in the fundamentals of exporting products; holding similar seminars in the Spanish language will open more opportunities to export to Southern California businesses.  Pre-registration is required and can be completed online on the Port of Los Angeles Trade Connect Export Workshops website. Read more.

Unspent earmarks becoming available for infrastructure project use Almost $500 million in unspent earmarks will be redistributed to states' use on infrastructure projects.  This "Use It or Lose It" program is an attempt to stimulate the job market as well as improve transportation. The 49 states that will be receiving funds have until the beginning of October to indicate how the funds will be utilized. Once the project is approved by the U.S. Department of Transportation, states have until the end of December to commit to these projects. Untouched money will become a part of the 2013 fiscal year budget and redistributed to states that used their funds. Read more.
Russia becomes member of the World Trade Organization
Russia has entered the World Trade Organization  as the 156th country to join. Current President Vladimir Putin aims for Russia to become a more influential country in global affairs; President Putin wants to attract capital and diversify Russia's economy as the world's biggest energy exporter. Before becoming a member, Russia was the largest economy outside of the organization. In March, the World Bank stated that with Russia's entry into the organization, $162 billion per year is estimated as the economic output over the long term market access and foreign investment. Read more.
Around the clock custom clearances to be tested in India
The Indian government authorities will provide around the clock customs clearances for a four month trial period, in hopes that it will speed up cargo flow. These around-the-clock customs will be provided at eight of the country's major seaports and airports. Currently, any shipments delivered at a time that facilities are unavailable have to wait until clearance facilities are open to move to their destination.Read more .
Extension of punitive tariffs against Byrd amendment
Japan will extend punitive tariffs in retaliation against a U.S. anti-dumping trade law known as the Byrd amendment. Back in 2005, Japan first imposed retaliatory tariffs on 15 items, including steel products. The Byrd amendment was created to allow anti-dumping duties collected by the U.S. government from foreign companies to be redistributed among U.S. companies to cover losses from cheap imports. However, according to the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry, the U.S. "continues to perform distribution that was found to be illegal." Read more.
Compiled by Brittany Garcia and Ashley Arikawa, Global Initiatives Interns

For more information, contact Jasmin Sakai-Gonzalez, 213.580.7569.