[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 249 (Friday, December 28, 2012)]
[Notices]
[Pages 76594-76596]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-31282]


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OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE


Generalized System of Preferences (GSP): Notice Regarding the 
Disposition of a Product Petition From the 2011 GSP Annual Product 
Review and the Acceptance of Product Petitions for the 2012 GSP Annual 
Product Review

AGENCY: Office of the United States Trade Representative.

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: This notice announces (1) the disposition of a petition on 
certain pinch-seal plastic bags, accepted in the 2011 GSP Annual 
Product Review, and (2) those petitions submitted in connection with 
the 2012 GSP Annual Product Review which have been accepted for further 
review. This notice also sets forth the schedule for submitting 
comments and for public hearings associated with the 2012 review of 
petitions and products.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tameka Cooper, GSP Program, Office of 
the United States Trade Representative, 600 17th Street NW., Room 422, 
Washington, DC 20508. The telephone number is (202) 395-6971, the fax 
number is (202) 395-9674, and the email address is Tameka_Cooper@ustr.eop.gov.

DATES: The GSP regulations (15 CFR part 2007) provide the schedule of 
dates for conducting an annual review, unless otherwise specified in a 
notice published in the Federal Register. The schedule for the 2012 GSP 
Annual Product Review is set forth below. Notification of any other 
changes will be published in the Federal Register.
    February 14, 2013--Comments, pre-hearing briefs, and requests to 
appear at the GSP Subcommittee Public Hearing on the 2012 GSP Annual 
Product Review are due by 5 p.m.
    February 28, 2013--GSP Subcommittee Public Hearing on all proposed 
or petitioned product additions and competitive need limitation (CNL) 
waiver petitions accepted for the 2012 GSP Annual Product Review. See 
``Notice of Public Hearing'' below for further details.
    March 28, 2013--Submission of post-hearing comments or briefs in

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connection with the GSP Subcommittee Public Hearing are due by 5 p.m.
    April 2013--The U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) is 
expected to release the public version of its statutorily-mandated 
report providing advice on the probable economic effect of the 
prospective addition of products and granting of CNL waiver petitions 
considered as part of the 2012 GSP Annual Product Review. Comments on 
the USITC report on these products should be submitted via 
www.regulations.gov in Docket Number USTR-2012-0013, per the guidelines 
described below, within 10 calendar days after the date of USITC's 
publication of the public version of the report.
    July 1, 2013--Effective date for any modifications that the 
President proclaims to the list of articles eligible for duty-free 
treatment under the GSP resulting from the 2012 Annual Product Review 
and for determinations related to CNL waivers.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The GSP program provides for the duty-free 
importation of designated articles when imported from designated 
beneficiary developing countries. The GSP program is authorized by 
title V of the Trade Act of 1974 (19 U.S.C. 2461, et seq.), as amended, 
and is implemented in accordance with Executive Order 11888 of November 
24, 1975, as modified by subsequent Executive Orders and Presidential 
Proclamations.

Disposition of a Petition Requesting Modification of Product 
Eligibility From the 2011 Annual GSP Review

    In the 2011 Annual Review, the Administration deferred a decision 
on the final disposition of a petition to add certain pinch-seal 
plastic bags (categorized under subheading 3923.21.0030 of the 
Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS)) to the list of products eligible for 
duty-free treatment under GSP. The review of this petition has now 
concluded, and the Administration has decided to deny the petition. As 
a result, there will be no change to the current status of this product 
under GSP.

Petitions Requesting Modifications of Product Eligibility for the 2012 
Annual GSP Review

    In a notice published in the Federal Register on July 30, 2012, 
USTR announced the initiation of the 2012 GSP Annual Review and 
indicated that the deadline for petitions to modify the list of 
products that are eligible for duty-free treatment under the GSP 
program was October 5, 2012, and the deadline for petitions to waive 
CNLs on imports of certain products from specific beneficiary countries 
was November 21, 2012 (77 FR 44704).
    The GSP Subcommittee of the Trade Policy Staff committee (TPSC) has 
reviewed the product and CNL waiver petitions submitted in response to 
this announcement, and has decided to accept for review petitions to 
add four products to the list of those eligible for duty-free treatment 
under GSP and petitions to waive CNLs for 12 products from certain 
countries. The accepted product addition petitions are for the 
following products, listed by HTS number:

 0603.11.00--Fresh cut sweetheart, and spray roses
 0710.80.97--Frozen vegetables not otherwise listed, including 
frozen broccoli
 2005.99.80--Artichokes, prepared or preserved otherwise than 
by vinegar or acetic acid
 7408.19.0030--Refined copper, wire, w/maximum cross-sectional 
dimension of 6 mm or less

The accepted petitions to waive CNLs relate to the following products 
listed by HTS number and countries:

 0410.00.00-- Miscellaneous edible products of animal origin 
(Indonesia)
 0603.13.00--Cut orchids (Thailand)
 1102.90.25--Rice flour (Thailand)
 2106.90.99--Miscellaneous prepared foods (Thailand)
 6911.10.37--Porcelain or china table and kitchenware 
(Indonesia)
 7202.21.50--Ferrosilicon with between 55% and 80% of silicon 
by weight (Russia)
 7202.30.00--Ferrosilicon manganese (Georgia)
 7202.99.20--Calcium silicon ferroalloys (Brazil)
 7307.21.50--Certain stainless steel flanges for pipes (India)
 7307.91.50--Certain iron or steel flanges for pipes (India)
 7408.29.10--Copper plates, sheets, and strip (Thailand)
 9506.70.40--Ice skates (Thailand)

    A list of all the CNL petitions and products accepted for review is 
posted on the USTR Web site at http://www.ustr.gov/trade-topics/trade-development/preference-programs/generalized-system-preferences-gsp/current-review under the title ``Petitions Accepted in the 2012 GSP 
Annual Product Review.'' This list can also be found at 
www.regulations.gov in Docket Number USTR-2012-0013. No other petitions 
to modify the list of products eligible for duty-free treatment under 
GSP or to grant CNL waivers have been accepted for the 2012 GSP Annual 
Product Review. Acceptance of a petition for review does not indicate 
any opinion with respect to the disposition on the merits of the 
petition. Acceptance indicates only that the subject petition has been 
found eligible for review by the TPSC and that such review will take 
place.
    The GSP Subcommittee of the TPSC invites comments in support of or 
in opposition to any product or petition that has been accepted for the 
2012 GSP Annual Product Review. The GSP Subcommittee of the TPSC will 
also convene a public hearing on these products and petitions. See 
below for information on how to submit a request to testify at this 
hearing.

Requirements for Submissions

    Submissions in response to this notice (including requests to 
testify, written comments, and pre-hearing and post-hearing briefs) 
must be submitted by the applicable deadlines set forth in this notice. 
All submissions must be made in English and submitted electronically 
via http://www.regulations.gov, using docket number USTR-2012-0013. 
Hand-delivered submissions will not be accepted. To make a submission 
using http://www.regulations.gov, enter docket number USTR-2012-0013 in 
the ``Search for'' field on the home page and click ``Search.'' The 
site will provide a search-results page listing all documents 
associated with this docket. Find a reference to this notice by 
selecting ``Notice'' under ``Document Type'' in the ``Filter Results 
by'' section on the left side of the screen and click on the link 
entitled ``Comment Now.'' The http://www.regulations.gov Web site 
offers the option of providing comments by filling in a ``Type 
Comment'' field or by attaching a document using the ``Upload file(s)'' 
field. The Subcommittee prefers that submissions be provided in an 
attached document and that, in such cases, that parties note ``See 
attached'' in the ``Type Comment'' field on the online submission form. 
At the beginning of the submission, or on the first page (if an 
attachment) should be the following text (in bold and underlined): (1) 
``2012 GSP Annual Review;'' (2) the product description, and related 
HTS tariff number; and (3) whether the document is a ``Written 
Comment,'' ``Notice of Intent to Testify,'' ``Pre-hearing brief,'' or a 
``Post-hearing brief.'' Submissions should not exceed 30 single-spaced, 
standard letter-size pages in 12-point type, including attachments. Any 
data attachments to the submission should be included in the same file 
as the submission itself, and not as separate files.
    Each submitter will receive a submission tracking number upon

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completion of the submissions procedure at http://www.regulations.gov. 
The tracking number will be the submitter's confirmation that the 
submission was received into http://www.regulations.gov. The 
confirmation should be kept for the submitter's records. USTR is not 
able to provide technical assistance for the Web site. Documents not 
submitted in accordance with these instructions may not be considered 
in this review. If an interested party is unable to provide submissions 
as requested, please contact the GSP Program at USTR to arrange for an 
alternative method of transmission.

Business Confidential Submissions

    An interested party requesting that information contained in a 
submission be treated as business confidential information must certify 
that such information is business confidential and would not 
customarily be released to the public by the submitter. Confidential 
business information must be clearly designated as such. The submission 
must be marked ``BUSINESS CONFIDENTIAL'' at the top and bottom of the 
cover page and each succeeding page, and the submission should 
indicate, via brackets, the specific information that is confidential. 
Additionally, ``Business Confidential'' must be included in the ``Type 
Comment'' field. For any submission containing business confidential 
information, a non-confidential version must be submitted separately 
(i.e., not as part of the same submission with the confidential 
version), indicating where confidential information has been redacted. 
The non-confidential version will be placed in the docket and open to 
public inspection.

Notice of Public Hearing

    The GSP Subcommittee of the TPSC will hold a hearing on products 
and petitions accepted for the 2012 GSP Annual Review beginning at 9:30 
a.m. on Thursday, February 28, 2013 at the Office of the U.S. Trade 
Representative, Rooms 1 and 2, 1724 F St. NW., Washington, DC 20508. 
The hearing will be open to the public, and a transcript of the hearing 
will be made available on www.regulations.gov within approximately two 
weeks of the hearing. No electronic media coverage will be allowed.
    All interested parties wishing to make an oral presentation at the 
hearing must submit, following the above ``Requirements for 
Submissions,'' the name, address, telephone number, and email address 
(if available), of the witness(es) representing their organization to 
William D. Jackson, Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for GSP. 
Requests to present oral testimony in connection with the public 
hearing must be accompanied by a written brief or summary statement, in 
English, and must be received by 5 p.m., February 14, 2013. Oral 
testimony before the GSP Subcommittee will be limited to five-minute 
presentations that summarize or supplement information contained in 
briefs or statements submitted for the record. Parties not wishing to 
appear at the public hearing may submit, in English, pre-hearing briefs 
or statements and post-hearing written briefs or statements in 
accordance with the ``Requirements for Submissions'' above and by the 
above listed due dates. Public versions of all documents relating to 
the 2012 Annual Review will be made available for public viewing in 
docket USTR-2012-0013 at www.regulations.gov upon completion of 
processing and no later than one week after the due date.

William D. Jackson,
Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for the Generalized System 
of Preferences, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.
[FR Doc. 2012-31282 Filed 12-27-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3290-F3-P