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Featured Headlines:

Please Exclude These Section 301 Products

EPA Filing for Hydroflurocarbon

CTPAT Data Freeze Put on Ice

Things Are Looking Sweet in October!

New Captain of the FAA

Warehouse Automation Nation

Vietnam Invited to the CHIPS Party

Pushing Their Chips All-In

The Portly Problem of Climate Change

SMIC Investigations… NoHua-wei?!

Brazil’s Fluff Up

Please Exclude These Section 301 Products

  • Last week, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced that they are extending certain Section 301 exclusions—originally scheduled to expire on September 30, 2023—until December 31, 2023.
  • There are two sets of exclusions: the first set includes 77 covid-related commodities; and the second set extends an additional 352 exclusions.
  • Click here to read the Federal Register Notice—which includes the full list of excluded products.
  • Never miss another Section 301 breaking news alert! Click here to subscribe to receive our complimentary ShapFlash Alerts.

EPA Filing for Hydroflurocarbon

  • Did you hear that Version 14 of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Supplemental Guide now has guidance for filing required information for hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)?
  • Hydrofluorocarbons are highly potent greenhouse gases and EPA oversees the production and consumption of this product.
  • To access the new version, please refer to the EPA Supplemental CATAIR Guidelines.
  • Required filing for HFC is expected to be enforced beginning in early January 2024.
  • For additional guidance from CBP, please refer to CSMS #57584150.

CTPAT Data Freeze Put on Ice

  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials announced that the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) Data Freeze will no longer launch as planned on September 16th.
  • CBP delayed the freeze to ensure thorough testing and development of the new portals before it goes live. Customs officials will send out the new timeline with sufficient notice to all partners prior to a new scheduled data freeze.
  • In the meantime, CBP has asked that all contacts be updated in your C-TPAT portal. You can do this by deleting old contacts and updating new ones within your organization.
  • C-TPAT is excited to deliver a first-class user experience once the portals are deployed.
  • Any questions? Feel free to reach out to our compliance experts!

Things Are Looking Sweet in October!

  • On Monday, October 2nd, the Specialty Sugar and Raw Cane Sugar Quota opens for the 2024 period, which runs from October 1, 2023 – September 30, 2024.
  • The Specialty Sugar restraint level is 1,656,000 kg. This Quota is expected to oversubscribe at opening moment.
  • For the Raw Cane Sugar allocations for this quota period, please see QB 23-303 2024 Raw Sugar Cane Allocations.
  • For more information on the Specialty Sugar quota information, please see QB 23-305 2024 Specialty Sugar Period 1.

New Captain of the FAA

  • President Biden has nominated Michael Whitaker as Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
  • Whitaker served as Deputy Administrator for the FAA from 2013 to 2016 and helped transition air traffic control systems for the U.S. to satellite-enabled surveillance.
  • He has experience in executive roles with several airlines, and he also serves on the board of the Flight Safety Foundation.

Warehouse Automation Nation

  • Brace yourselves—the future of warehouse automation has finally hit the US! And Will Smith might want to brush up on his machine-fighting skills because it might be time for him to reprise his iRobot role…
  • Several major retailers, including Dollar General, have been investing heavily in automating their warehouses and distribution centers.
  • The technology is expected to allow companies to process thousands of additional SKUs, while also improving storage inside the facilities.
  • They all aim to streamline their supply chains from port to door, reducing the need for large storage facilities and keeping costs down.
  • So, whether you’re rooting for the robots or just hoping they don’t take over the world, one thing is for sure, we’re living in the era of automation logistics.
  • Any questions? Feel free to reach out to the Shapiro Freight Experts

Vietnam Invited to the CHIPS Party

  • If you’ve been keeping up with all the news on CHIPS, our last edition highlighted concerns with Chinese manufacturers having access to semiconductor chips.
  • As a hint for the latest invitee to the party, they’re bringing Nuoc Cham, a signature dipping sauce of the culture.
  • If you missed the sauce reference, President Biden recently made a trip back to Asia—only this time he landed a bit south in Hanoi—Vietnam’s one-thousand-year-old capitol.
  • The U.S. Government, along with several major U.S. tech companies, have been eyeing Vietnamese exports with more enthusiasm than a kid in a candy store, as several billion-dollar deals have been announced with Vietnam.
  • Why Vietnam, you ask? From a mere $200 million in 1995, exports have skyrocketed to a whopping $99 billion in 2021. That’s a growth rate of 27% annually, folks! So, while we’re talking chips, Vietnam’s been stacking them high on the export poker table.

Pushing Their Chips All-In

  • Not only is Shapiro keeping a watchful eye on exports from Vietnam, but the Hanoian (four syllables, people!) bigwigs are too because they’ve just announced a whopping $1.7 billion expansion plan for their inland container depots by 2030.
  • Vietnam’s government is acting like a professional blackjack player counting cards, and is projecting a demand surge of up to 17.1m TEU by 2030—a 44% increase from what’s in the pot already!
  • These high-stake investments are intended to help meet demand, reduce logistics costs, shorten storage periods, and improve the ability to handle capacity.
  • These depots will be strategically built in the budding areas of Vietnam, not only to beef up the logistics infrastructure but also to ease some traffic congestion in their bustling cities. Think of it as adding a few wild cards to their hand to help keep exports running smoothly by scaling essential infrastructure.

The Portly Problem of Climate Change

  • Brace yourselves for the “portly problem” of climate change…where Mother Nature’s rising tide is threatening to sink more than just ships!
  • As if the Panama Canal’s ocean commotion wasn’t enough, climate change is once again stealing the limelight.
  • A recent report published by Lloyd’s Register has sounded major alarm bells, showing that by 2050, several key ports around the world could be rendered inoperable (like the lost city of Atlantis).
  • It turns out that over a third of our planet’s ports reside in a tropical danger zone—right in the crosshairs of the impacts of climate change.
  • As an example, the ports of Shanghai, Houston, and Lazaro Cardenas could all be inoperable by 2050, with a rise in sea level as small as 40 cm. To put that in perspective, that’s less than the average two-liter soda!

SMIC Investigations… NoHua-wei?!

  • Recent concerns that U.S. semiconductor chips might be slipping into the wrong hands have taken a startling turn. A full-blown investigation is now underway, shining a spotlight on the chips nestled in Huawei’s smartphones.
  • Specifically, it’s the 7nm Chips found in the Mate Pro 60, that are under scrutiny. These came straight from the Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC). It’s like a plot twist right out of a tech-savvy spy movie!
  • Here’s the kicker: In 2020, the U.S. barred SMIC from obtaining the machinery necessary for producing these chips. The process required to produce chips of this size requires billions for research, so the burning question is how and where did SMIC manage to get their hands on this equipment?

Brazil’s Fluff Up

  • Move over, Texas, because Brazil is vying to dethrone the Lone Star State as the king of fluff.
  • If they succeed, it would be another setback for U.S. agriculture, especially after Brazil claimed the throne for corn production earlier this year. It’s a cotton showdown heating up in the fields, this time!
  • This heat is literal for Texas, as the crop faces their second worst agricultural conditions ever, having a significant effect on production for the year.
  • Meanwhile, led by Brazil, South America is cottoning on the opportunity. Their production is on the rise, and they’re expected to overtake the U.S. later this year.