[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 4 (Friday, January 6, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 772-774]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-47]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

Bureau of Economic Analysis

15 CFR Parts 801, 806, and 807

[Docket No.: 111012619-1619-01]
RIN 0691-AA81


International Services Surveys and Direct Investment Surveys 
Reporting

AGENCY: Bureau of Economic Analysis.

ACTION: Proposed rule; request for comments.

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SUMMARY: The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) proposes to revise its 
rules to establish general guidelines for reporting on international 
trade in services and direct investment surveys provided for by the 
International Investment and Trade in Services Survey Act (22 U.S.C. 
3101 to 3108, (the Act)). In addition to the Act, the Omnibus Trade and 
Competitiveness Act of 1988 (15 U.S.C. 4908) provides authority for the 
international trade in services surveys. Currently, international trade 
in services and direct investment surveys are promulgated through 
separate rulemaking actions. This rule will modify the guidelines to 
allow such surveys to be issued through notices rather than as more 
formal rulemakings. The purpose of this rule is to provide a more 
general framework for collection of data on these surveys that are 
required, or provided for, by the statutes. The effect of this rule is 
to simplify and generalize existing regulations governing the 
procurement of information on international trade in services and 
direct investment.

DATES: Comments on this proposed rule will receive consideration if 
submitted in writing on or before 5 p.m. March 6, 2012.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by RIN 0691-AA81, and 
referencing the agency name (Bureau of Economic Analysis), by any of 
the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 
Follow the instructions for submitting comments. For Keyword or ID, 
enter ``EAB-2011-0003.''
     Email: David.Galler@bea.gov.
     Fax: Office of the Chief, Direct Investment Division, 
(202) 606-2894.
     Mail: Office of the Chief, Direct Investment Division, 
U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis, BE-50, 
Washington, DC 20230.
     Hand Delivery/Courier: Office of the Chief, Direct 
Investment Division, U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of

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Economic Analysis, BE-50, Shipping and Receiving, Section M100, 1441 L 
Street NW., Washington, DC 20005.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: David H. Galler, Chief, Direct 
Investment Division (BE-50), Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. 
Department of Commerce, Washington, DC 20230; phone (202) 606-9835.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The purpose of the Act is to provide for the 
collection of comprehensive and reliable information pertaining to 
international investment, including international trade in services and 
direct investment, and to do so with a minimum of burden on respondents 
and with no unnecessary duplication of effort. The Act specifies that 
regular data collection programs and surveys, as specified in the Act 
or as deemed necessary by the Secretary of Commerce pursuant to 
Executive Order 11961, as amended by Executive Orders 12318 and 12518, 
shall be conducted to secure information on international trade in 
services and on direct investment, including information that may be 
necessary for computing the international transactions and national 
income and product accounts and for deriving estimates of direct 
investment position and of operations of multinational companies.
    The existing regulations (15 CFR parts 801 and 806) implementing 
certain provisions of the Act govern the reporting information on 
surveys of international trade in services and direct investment and 
provide detailed instructions to survey respondents on how to report 
and what forms to complete and submit when responding to the surveys. 
This method ensures that all potential respondents are notified of the 
new survey, but the process can hinder the timely gathering of 
information due to the necessary rulemaking steps.
    BEA proposes to revise these regulations to generalize the 
reporting requirements with respect to these surveys under the Act. 
Because of the level of detail included in the existing regulations, a 
rulemaking is required each time a change--such as changes in the 
survey year for a benchmark survey, the title of a survey, and the 
reporting threshold for a survey--is made to a survey. For surveys that 
are conducted on an ongoing basis--quarterly, annually, quinqenially--
specific reporting information regarding individual surveys can more 
efficiently be issued as notices rather than through individual 
rulemakings. BEA can determine the likely universe of survey 
respondents through ongoing research of databases and outreach to 
professional organizations, so the surveys will continue to receive 
similar coverage and response rates even if they are issued as notices. 
Finally, there is no requirement in the Act or elsewhere that the 
reporting requirements and detailed instructions for such surveys be 
issued following notice and comment rulemaking. Therefore, BEA proposes 
to remove the current regulations and publish in the Federal Register 
notices of future surveys of foreign and direct investment in the 
United States and international trade in services.
    If this proposed rule is adopted, notice of specific surveys 
pertaining to international investment and trade in services and direct 
investment, including applicable report forms and instructions, would 
now be separately published in the Federal Register. In addition, only 
respondents notified of these surveys would be required to respond to 
BEA surveys.

Executive Order 12866

    This proposed rule has been determined to be not significant for 
purposes of E.O. 12866.

Executive Order 13132

    This proposed rule does not contain policies with Federalism 
implications sufficient to warrant preparation of a Federalism 
assessment under E.O. 13132.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Chief Counsel for Regulation, Department of Commerce, has 
certified to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy, Small Business 
Administration, under the provisions of the Regulatory Flexibility Act 
(5 U.S.C. 605(b)), that this proposed rulemaking, if adopted, will not 
have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities. The new rule will affect only BEA's internal procedures 
regarding how it conducts surveys of international trade in services 
and direct investment. None of the proposed changes would have a direct 
effect on any businesses, large or small. Those subject to these 
surveys will still be required to respond to BEA's requests for 
information, but the requests themselves will not be subject to notice 
and comment rulemaking. Therefore, the effect of this proposed rule is 
to simplify and generalize existing regulations governing the 
procurement of information on the international trade in services and 
direct investment under the Act. Because there would be no impact to 
small entities as a result of this change to the regulations, the Chief 
Counsel certified that this proposed rulemaking, if adopted, will not 
have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities. Accordingly, no initial regulatory flexibility analysis is 
required, and none has been prepared.

List of Subjects in 15 CFR Part 801

    Cross-Border transactions, Credit card, Debit card, Economic 
statistics, Foreign investment in the United States, Foreign trade, 
International transactions, Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements, Travel expenses, U.S. investment abroad.

    Dated: December 20, 2011.
J. Steven Landefeld,
Director, Bureau of Economic Analysis.

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, Parts 801, and 806 of 
Title 15 of the Code of Federal Regulations are proposed to be revised 
to read as follows:

PART 801--SURVEYS OF INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN SERVICES BETWEEN U.S. 
AND FOREIGN PERSONS AND SURVEYS OF DIRECT INVESTMENT

Sec.
801.1 Purpose.
801.2 Definitions.
801.3 Reporting Requirements.
801.4 Recordkeeping Requirements.
801.5 Confidentiality.
801.6 Penalties Specified by Law.

    Authority:  5 U.S.C. 301; 15 U.S.C. 4908; 22 U.S.C. 3101-3108; 
E.O. 11961 (3 CFR, 1977 Comp., p. 86), as amended by E.O. 12318 (3 
CFR, 1981 Comp. p. 173); and E.O. 12518 (3 CFR, 1985 Comp. p. 348).
    Source: 42 FR 64315, Dec. 22, 1977 and 51 FR 7772, Mar. 6, 1986, 
unless otherwise noted.


Sec.  801.1  Purpose.

    The purpose of this part is to provide general information on 
international trade in services and direct investment data collection 
programs and analyses under the International Investment and Trade in 
Services Survey Act (22 U.S.C. 3101 to 3108, as amended) (the Act). The 
purpose of the Act is to provide for the collection of comprehensive 
and reliable information pertaining to international investment, 
including international trade in services and direct investment, and to 
do so with a minimum of burden on respondents and with no unnecessary 
duplication of effort.


Sec.  801.2  Definitions.

    For purposes of the Act and for reporting requirements under this 
Part:
    (a) United States, when used in a geographic sense, means the 
several States, the District of Columbia, the

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Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and all territories and possessions of the 
United States.
    (b) Foreign, when used in a geographic sense, means that which is 
situated outside the United States or which belongs to or is 
characteristic of a country other than the United States.
    (c) Person means any individual, branch, partnership, associated 
group, association, estate, trust, corporation, or other organization 
(whether or not organized under the laws of any State), and any 
government (including a foreign government, the United States 
Government, a State or local government, and any agency, corporation, 
financial institution, or other entity or instrumentality thereof, 
including a government-sponsored agency).
    (d) United States person means any person resident in the United 
States or subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
    (e) Foreign person means any person resident outside the United 
States or subject to the jurisdiction of a country other than the 
United States.
    (f) Business enterprise means any organization, association, 
branch, or venture which exists for profit-making purposes or to 
otherwise secure economic advantage, and any ownership of any real 
estate.
    (g) Services are economic activities whose outputs are other than 
tangible goods. This term includes, but is not limited to, banking, 
other financial services, insurance, transportation, communications and 
data processing, retail and wholesale trade, advertising, accounting, 
construction, design, engineering, management consulting, real estate, 
professional services, entertainment, education, and health care.
    (h) International investment means: (1) The ownership or control, 
directly or indirectly, by contractual commitment or otherwise, by 
foreign persons of any interest in property in the United States, or of 
stock, other securities, or short- and long-term debt obligations of a 
United States person; and (2) the ownership or control, directly or 
indirectly, by contractual commitment or otherwise, by United States 
persons of any interest in property outside the United States, or of 
stock, other securities, or short- and long-term debt obligations of a 
foreign person.
    (i) Direct investment means the ownership or control, directly or 
indirectly, by one person of 10 percent or more of the voting 
securities of an incorporated business enterprise or an equivalent 
interest in an unincorporated business enterprise.


Sec.  801.3  Reporting Requirements.

    (a) Notice of specific reporting requirements, including who is 
required to report, the information to be reported, the manner of 
reporting, and the time and place of filing reports, will be published 
by the Director of the Bureau of Economic Analysis in the Federal 
Register prior to the implementation of a survey.
    (b) In accordance with section 3104(b)(2) of title 22 of the United 
States Code persons notified of these surveys and subject to the 
jurisdiction of the United States shall furnish, under oath, any report 
containing information which is determined to be necessary to carry out 
the surveys and studies provided for by the Act.


Sec.  801.4  Recordingkeeping Requirements.

    In accordance with section 3104(b)(1) of title 22 of the United 
States Code, persons subject to the jurisdiction of the United States 
shall maintain any information which is essential for carrying out the 
surveys and studies provided for by the Act.


Sec.  801.5  Confidentiality.

    Information collected pursuant to 3104(c) of title 22 of the United 
States Code
    (a) Access to this information shall be available only to officials 
and employees (including consultants and contractors and their 
employees) of agencies designated by the President to perform functions 
under the Act.
    (b) Subject to paragraph (d) of this section, the President may 
authorize the exchange of information between agencies or officials 
designated to perform functions under the Act.
    (c) Nothing in this part shall be construed to require any Federal 
agency to disclose information otherwise protected by law.
    (d) This information shall be used solely for analytical or 
statistical purposes or for a proceeding under Sec.  801.6.
    (e) No official or employee (including consultants and contractors 
and their employees) shall publish or make available to any other 
person any information collected under the Act in such a manner that 
the person to whom the information relates can be specifically 
identified.
    (f) Reports and copies of reports prepared pursuant to the Act are 
confidential and their submission or disclosure shall not be compelled 
by any person without the prior written permission of the person filing 
the report and the customer of such person where the information 
supplied is identifiable as being derived from the records of such 
customer.


Sec.  801.6  Penalties.

    (a) Civil Penalties. Whoever fails to furnish any information 
required by the Act or to comply with any rule, regulation, order or 
instruction promulgated under the Act shall be subject to a civil 
penalty of not less than $2,500, and not more than $25,000, and to 
injunctive relief commanding such person to comply, or both (see 22 
U.S.C. 3105(a) and (b)). These civil penalties are subject to 
inflationary adjustments (15 CFR 6.4.).
    (b) Criminal Penalties. Whoever willfully fails to submit any 
information required by the Act or willfully violates any rule, 
regulation, order or instruction promulgated under the Act, upon 
conviction, shall be fined not more than $10,000 and, if an individual, 
may be imprisoned for not more than one year, or both. Any officer, 
director, employee, or agent of any corporation who knowingly 
participates in such violations, upon conviction, may be punished by a 
like fine, imprisonment or both (see 22 U.S.C. 3105(c)).

PART 806--[RESERVED]

PART 807--[RESERVED]

[FR Doc. 2012-47 Filed 1-5-12; 8:45 am]
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