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Alerts and Updates

Department of Commerce Implements New Exclusion Process for Products Subject to Steel and Aluminum Tariffs

June 17, 2019

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This new platform does not substantively change the requirements of the exclusions process.

Importers of steel and aluminum products subject to Section 232 tariffs will have a new method for requesting exclusions.

On June 13, 2019, the Department of Commerce Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) implemented a rule allowing individuals and businesses to submit exclusion requests through the 232 Exclusion Portal, which replaces the previous federal rulemaking portal, regulations.gov. BIS has implemented this change to streamline the exclusions process while strengthening data integrity and accessibility. This new platform does not substantively change the requirements of the exclusions process.

Similar to regulations.gov, the 232 Exclusion Portal will allow clients to file for exclusion requests, object to another party’s exclusion request or file rebuttals to any third party’s objections to previously submitted requests.

This change follows a litany of exclusion requests already received by the Department of Commerce. On March 8, 2019, the White House issued Proclamations 9704 and 9705, which allowed the imposition of duties on imports of aluminum and steel articles pursuant to Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962. These proclamations also authorized the secretary of Commerce to grant exclusions from duties if aluminum or steel articles are not “produced in the United States in a sufficient and reasonably available amount or of a satisfactory quality” or if the articles implicate “specific national security considerations.” See 84 FR 26751. As of June 14, 2019, steel products entered for consumption from foreign countries―with the exception of steel articles from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada and South Korea―are subject to a 25 percent ad valorem rate of duty. A 10 percent ad valorem duty applies to aluminum products from foreign counties, except products imported from Argentina, Australia, Canada and Mexico. For more information, read the U.S. Customs and Border Protection recap of these developments as well as our previous Alerts from March 16 and March 28.

The Department of Commerce has previously granted exemptions for products including various steel products used by oil and gas companies, various automobile parts, certain polished metal plates, casings and other products. 

For More Information

If you would like further information about this Alert and the exclusion request submission process for products subject to Section 232 tariffs, please contact Brian S. Goldstein, J. Manly Parks, Nathan B. Reeder, any member of the International Practice Group or the attorney in the firm with whom you are regularly in contact.

Disclaimer: This Alert has been prepared and published for informational purposes only and is not offered, nor should be construed, as legal advice. For more information, please see the firm's full disclaimer.