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Apr 28 -- The U.S. International Trade Commission (Commission or USITC) invites comment by June 27, 2022 on the draft questionnaire on the Effects of FTZ Policies and Practices on U.S. Firms Operating in U.S. FTZs and Under Similar Programs in Canada and Mexico.

The information requested by the questionnaire is for use by the Commission in connection with Investigation No. 332-588, Foreign Trade Zones (FTZs): Effects of FTZ Policies and Practices on U.S. Firms Operating in U.S. FTZs and Under Similar Programs in Canada and Mexico, instituted under the authority of section 332(g) of the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1332(g)). This investigation and report were requested by the United States Trade Representative (USTR) on December 14, 2021. This investigation was initiated on January 26, 2022, and the notice of investigation was published in the Federal Register on January 31, 2022 (87 FR 4914). The Commission will deliver its report to USTR by April 14, 2023.  
 
As stated in the notice of investigation, the USTR requested that the Commission's report include detailed data and other information on firms operating in FTZs in the United States, and under similar programs in Canada, and Mexico. Such information is not available in the requested specificity from governmental and other public sources. The Commission indicated in its notice of investigation that it will need to obtain much of such data and information through a survey. The survey will assist the Commission in developing, as requested, an overview of economic activity and policies and practices in U.S. FTZs and under similar programs in Canada and Mexico, and the effects of those policies and practices on the cost competitiveness of products of firms operating in these programs. Similar programs in Canada include the Duties Relief Program, Drawback Program, Export Distribution Center Program, and Exporters of Processing Services Program. Similar programs in Mexico include Industria Manufacturera, Maquiladora y de Servicios de Exportación (IMMEX), Value Added Tax (VAT)/Special Tax on Production and Services (IEPS) Certification, Programa de Promoción Sectorial (PROSEC), Rule 8 (Regla 8), and Operadores Económicos Autorizados (OEA) (previously Nuevo Esquema de Empresas Certificadas (NEEC)).
 
Results from the questionnaire will inform the Commission’s investigation on the economic activity in U.S. FTZs and under similar programs in Canada, and Mexico since 2016. Collection will include (1) data on the number of firms operating in FTZs, (2) data on FTZ employment, (3) a list of the leading sectors/ industries participating in FTZs, (4) data on shipments into FTZs and exports from FTZs, and (5) data on foreign direct investment in FTZs. Collected data will also be used to analyze the effects of current policies and practices in U.S. FTZs and under similar programs in Canada, and Mexico, including the effect on employment and the cost-competitiveness of products of firms operating in these programs. The letter requesting these investigations is available here.

Investigation No. 332-588 draft questionnaire and background information: https://pubapps2.usitc.gov/comments_332_588/
FRN: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2022-09115

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