The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) repealed a recent change in the 2010 Harmonized Tariff Schedule that would have effectively laid the groundwork for implementation of the Dairy Import Assessment (DIA). IDFA previously advocated for the repeal or modification of the requirement, which was implemented January 1.
Prior to the suspension, numerous countries that offer important exports markets for the United States questioned the one sided reporting requirement and reiterated to the U.S. Trade Representative that the assessment is not compliant with U.S. trade obligations. The Customs mandate would have required milk solids reporting on over 250 different food products, including many foods that are not considered dairy products, such as cocoas, beverages, doughs and mixes. U.S. exports of the same products, however, would not have been subject to the additional reporting requirements.
Reporting milk solids data was proposed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture as the basis for collecting assessments, estimated at $6 million, to augment the National Dairy Promotion and Research program, the U.S. dairy producer check-off program. To date, this program solely promotes U.S. dairy products.
Congress authorized USDA to collect assessments on imported dairy products, as long as the domestically oriented check-off program was changed to promote imports as well as U.S. dairy products. It remains to be seen whether these stipulations can be met.
"The government's decision to repeal the reporting requirement was a good indication that they are concerned about the larger trade implications of the DIA," said Ruth Saunders, IDFA vice president of policy and legislative affairs.
For more information, contact Saunders, at (202) 220-3553 or firstname.lastname@example.org.