May 04, 2011

Hearing to Examine: Why is Evading U.S. Trade Enforcement So Easy?

Panel Will Hear Testimony from Industry leaders and representatives from Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Customs and Border Protection, and the Department of Commerce

Washington, D.C. – Tomorrow, Thursday, May 5, 2011 at 2 pm in room 215 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) will chair a hearing of the Senate Finance Committee’s subcommittee on International Trade, Customs and Global Competitiveness to examine why federal agencies are having difficulty enforcing U.S. trade laws specifically those related to anti-dumping and countervailing duties.  Click here to view the webcast.

Exporters from countries like China have been known to mislabel shipments and reroute goods through third-party countries in an effort to fool customs officials and circumvent U.S. trade laws that have been put in place to prevent unfair foreign trade practices.  But their success in circumventing customs officials is increasingly leaving U.S. products vulnerable to cheap foreign goods while it is estimated that the federal government is failing to collect hundreds of millions of dollars in tariffs and duties owed by foreign suppliers and importers.

Wyden, who has been working on legislation to help government agencies enforce U.S. trade laws, has been consulting with industry and government stakeholders to understand the magnitude of the problem posed by foreign suppliers and importers.   Last year, his staff released a report demonstrating how easy it is to identify Chinese suppliers willing and able to engage in nefarious schemes to subvert U.S. trade laws.

Click here to read the staff report.

The following is a list of those scheduled to testify:

Panel I


Robert L. Mahoney, President, Tubular Products Group, Northwest Pipe Company, Portland, OR

Richard Adee, Owner, Adee Honey Farms, and Chairman, American Honey Producers Associate Legislative Committee, Bruce, SD

Roger Schagrin, Chairman, Government Affairs Committee, Committee to Support U.S. Trade Laws, Annapolis, MD

Karl Glassman, Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, Leggett & Platt, Incorporated, Carthage, MO

Marguerite E. Trossevin, Jochum Shore & Trossevin on behalf of the Retail Industry Leaders Association, Alexandria, VA

Panel II

Allen Gina, Assistant Commissioner of International Trade, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Washington, DC

J. Scott Ballman, Deputy Assistant Director, Homeland Security Investigations, U. S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Washington, DC

Ronald Lorentzen, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Import Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, Washington, DC