With President Obama’s signature of the Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015, GSP has been renewed and AGOA extended.
The Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program allows about 5,000 products from about 127 developing countries to enter the United States on a duty-free basis. The African Growth & Opportunity Act (AGOA) program provides duty-free access for products of sub-Saharan African exporters entering the United States.
Both programs help exports from developing countries to be competitive in the U.S. market. US importers who rely on the programs gain access to lower-priced consumer goods and manufacturing inputs.
The law retroactively renews the GSP program which expired August 1, 2014.
Main GSP Provisions:
• Renews GSP until December 31, 2017
• Gives importers 180 days to claim refunds for duties paid since the program expired on July 31, 2013
• Extends GSP eligibility to certain cotton products and to luggage and travel articles.
The law also extends the AGOA program which would otherwise have expired on September 30th of this year (2015).
Main AGOA Provisions:
• Renews AGOA until September 30, 2025
• Slightly relaxes the rules of origin — allows the direct costs of processing operations performed in one or more AGOA beneficiary country to be incorporated into the criteria used to determine if an African product qualifies for AGOA
• Requires the President to give at least 60-days’ notice to suspend a country’s eligibility for AGOA
• Recommends that countries develop AGOA utilization strategies every two years with the help of US capacity building agencies
HOPE for Haiti: Extends the duty-free entry into US markets for apparel exports from Haiti until September 30, 2025 and introduces more liberal rules under the Haitian Hemispheric Opportunity Through Partnership Encouragement Act (HOPE II).
TAA: Extended Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) for six (6) years and expanded the program to include service workers and all workers negatively impacted by trade.
Contact us for help with filing your claim for refund of GSP duties as well as to take advantage of AGOA, CBI, GSP & other trade preference programs.