Notice of List of Products Subject to Possible Withdrawal of Concessions in Response to European Union (EU) Changes to Its Rice Import Regime
In response to the European Union's changes to its rice import regime, the United States has notified the World Trade Organization of its intent to withdraw concessions by March 1, 2005, with respect to the goods in the attached list. Background: In Federal Register notices 04-20543, dated September 10, 2004, 04-21762 and dated September 28, 2004, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative sought comments concerning a list of goods for which tariff concessions may be withdrawn and duties may be increased in the event the United States cannot reach agreement with the European Union (EU) for adequate compensation owed under World Trade Organization (WTO) rules as a result of EU changes to its rice import regime. While the United States Government has actively sought a negotiated resolution of this issue, which would have alleviated the need to withdraw concessions, an agreement has not been reached. Therefore, in accordance with WTO rules, the United States has notified the WTO that it will withdraw substantially equivalent tariff concessions if an agreement is not reached before March 1. This notice provides the list of goods notified to the WTO on Friday, January 28, 2005. Whenever a foreign country withdraws, suspends, or modifies the application of trade agreement obligations of benefit to the United States without granting adequate compensation, the President is authorized under section 125(c) of the Trade Act of 1974 (19 U.S.C. 2135) to proclaim such increased duties or other import restrictions as are appropriate to effect adequate compensation. In the event that the United States withdraws substantially equivalent tariff concessions on March 1, increases in the duties applied to the goods included in the list notified to the WTO would be effected pursuant to this authority.
Request for Public Comment Regarding Andean Trade Promotion and Drug Eradication Act (ATPDEA) Beneficiary Countries
In compliance with section 203(f) of the Andean Trade Preference Act (ATPA) (19 U.S.C. 3201), as amended by the Andean Trade Promotion and Drug Eradication Act , the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) is requesting the views of interested parties on whether the countries designated as ATPA beneficiary countries in Presidential Proclamation 7616 of October 31, 2002, are meeting the eligibility criteria provided for in section 204(b)(6)(B) of the ATPA. This information will be used in the preparation of a report to the U.S. Congress on the operation of the program.