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June 25, 2015/  Volume 2015, Issue 15

 Congress Approves Trade Bills



Dear Valued Customer:


Long-awaited trade bills were approved by Congress this week and are expected to soon be signed into law by President Obama.


Legislation to reinstate Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), otherwise known as the "Fast-Track" bill, was passed by the Senate June 23. The TPA bill sets forth congressional objectives for trade agreement negotiations and provides for expedited congressional consideration of legislation implementing those agreements. TPA gives the President fast-track negotiating authority to finalize the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and any other trade agreement negotiated during a period of up to six years with the knowledge that Congress can only ratify them through an up-or-down vote, without any changes.


The House and Senate also approved this week legislation to reauthorize the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) through Dec. 31, 2017, retroactive to July 31, 2013, the date GSP expired. This means that importers will be able to obtain refunds of duties paid since that date on goods otherwise eligible for GSP treatment. In addition, the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and the Haiti HOPE and HELP acts were modified and extended through Sept. 30, 2025. The legislation also includes Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA), a support program for workers who lose their jobs when manufacturers take advantage of trade deals to relocate factories overseas.


It is expected that these bills will be signed into law by the President soon and the trade preference programs such as GSP and AGOA may go into effect by early August. James J. Boyle & Co. will monitor progress of these programs very closely and will keep our customers apprised.


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Los Angeles

Kent Sunakoda


(323)263-8100 ext. 327


Lisa Whiles


(503)284-0909 ext. 120


Terry Pilant 


(206)447-9580 ext. 104 

San Francisco

Connie Arimoto


(650)871-6334 ext. 3130


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