[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 160 (Wednesday, August 19, 2015)]
[Pages 50376-50377]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-20456]



Generalized System of Preferences (GSP): Notice of Initiation of 
the 2015 Annual GSP Product and Country Practices Review; Deadlines for 
Filing Petitions

AGENCY: Office of the United States Trade Representative.

ACTION: Notice of procedures for submission of petitions from the 


SUMMARY: This notice announces that the Office of the United States 
Trade Representative (USTR) is prepared to receive petitions to modify 
the list of products that are eligible for duty-free treatment under 
the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program and to modify the 
GSP status of certain GSP beneficiary developing countries because of 
country practices. USTR is also prepared to receive petitions 
requesting waivers of competitive need limitations (CNLs). This notice 
provides that, pursuant to 15 CFR part 2007.3, the following deadlines 
apply with respect to the 2015 review: 5:00 p.m., Friday, October 16, 
2015 for the submission of petitions to modify the list of articles 
eligible for duty-free treatment under GSP or to review the GSP status 
of any beneficiary developing country, and 5:00 p.m., Monday, November 
23, 2015 for the submission of petitions requesting CNL waivers. The 
lists of petitions accepted for review will be announced in the Federal 
Register at a later date.

ADDRESSES: Public comments should be submitted electronically to 
www.regulations.gov in docket number USTR-2015-0013.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: The GSP Program at the Office of the 
United States Trade Representative. The telephone number is (202) 395-
2974, the fax number is (202) 395-9674, and the email address is 


I. The 2015 Annual GSP Review

    The GSP regulations (15 CFR part 2007.3) provide the timetable for 
conducting an annual review, unless otherwise specified by notice in 
the Federal Register. Notice is hereby given that, in order to be 
considered in the 2015 Annual GSP Review, relevant petitions must be 
received by the GSP Subcommittee of the Trade Policy Staff Committee by 
the following deadlines:
    Friday, October 16, 2015, 5:00 p.m.: Petitions to modify the list 
of articles eligible for duty-free treatment under GSP.
    Friday, October 16, 2015, 5:00 p.m.: Petitions to review the GSP 
status of any beneficiary developing country.
    Monday, November 23, 2015, 5:00 p.m.: Petitions requesting waivers 
of CNLs.
    Petitions submitted after the above-listed deadlines will not be 
considered for review. Decisions on which petitions are accepted for 
review, along with a schedule for any related public hearings and the 
opportunity for the public to provide comments, will be announced in 
the Federal Register at a later date.

GSP Product Review Petitions

    Interested parties, including foreign governments, may submit 
petitions to: (1) Designate additional articles as eligible for GSP 
benefits, including to designate articles as eligible for GSP benefits 
only if imported from countries designated as least-developed 
beneficiary developing countries, or only from countries designated as 
beneficiary sub-Saharan African countries under the African Growth and 
Opportunity Act (AGOA); (2) withdraw, suspend or limit the application 
of duty-free treatment accorded under the GSP with respect to any 
article; and (3) otherwise modify GSP coverage. Petitioners seeking to 
add products to eligibility for GSP benefits should note that, as 
provided in section 503(b) of the Trade Act (19 U.S.C. 2463(b)), 
certain articles may not be designated as eligible articles under GSP.
    As specified in 15 CFR part 2007.1, all product petitions must 
include, inter alia, a detailed description of the product and the 
eight-digit subheading of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United 
States (HTSUS) under which the product is classified.

Country Practices Review Petitions

    Any interested party may submit a petition to review the GSP 
eligibility of any beneficiary developing country with respect to any 
of the designation criteria listed in sections 502(b) or 502(c) of the 
Trade Act (19 U.S.C. 2462(b) and (c)).

Competitive Need Limitations

    Any interested party may submit a petition seeking a waiver of the 
2015 CNL for individual beneficiary developing countries with respect 
to specific GSP-eligible articles (these limits do not apply to least-
developed beneficiary developing countries or AGOA beneficiary 
countries). Before submitting petitions for CNL waivers, prospective 
petitioners may wish to review the 2015 year-to-date import trade data 
for products of interest. This data is available via the U.S. 
International Trade Commission's ``Dataweb'' database at http://dataweb.usitc.gov/. For more information on CNLs and how they apply to 
the GSP program, please visit the GSP page of the USTR Web site at 

II. Requirements for Submissions

    All submissions for the GSP Annual Review must conform to the GSP 
regulations set forth at 15 CFR part 2007, except as modified below. 
These regulations are available on the USTR Web site at https://ustr.gov/issue-areas/trade-development/preference-programs/generalized-system-preference-gsp/gsp-program-inf.
    All submissions in response to this notice must be in English and 
must be submitted electronically via http://www.regulations.gov, using 
docket number USTR-2015-0013. Hand-delivered submissions will not be 
accepted. Submissions that do not provide the information required by 
sections 2007.0 and 2007.1 of the GSP regulations will not be accepted 
for review, except upon a detailed showing in the submission that the 
petitioner made a good faith effort to obtain the information required.

[[Page 50377]]

    To make a submission via http://www.regulations.gov, enter the 
docket number for this review--USTR-2015-0013--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.'' (For 
further information on using the http://www.regulations.gov Web site, 
please consult the resources provided on the Web site by clicking on 
``How to Use This Site'' on the left side of the home page.) The http://www.regulations.gov Web site allows users to provide comments by 
filling in a ``Type Comment'' field or by attaching a document using 
the ``Upload file(s)'' field. The GSP Subcommittee prefers that 
submissions be provided in an attached document.
    Submissions must include, at the beginning of the submission, or on 
the first page (if an attachment), the following text (in bold and 
underlined): (1) ``2015 GSP Annual Review''; and (2) the eight-digit 
HTSUS subheading number in which the product is classified (for product 
petitions) or the name of the country (for country practice petitions). 
Furthermore, interested parties submitting petitions that request 
action with respect to specific products should also list at the 
beginning of the submission, or on the first page (if an attachment) 
the following information: (1) The requested action; and (2) if 
applicable, the beneficiary developing country. 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 
    Each submitter will receive a submission tracking number upon 
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 
responsible for any delays in a submission due to technical 
difficulties, nor is it able to provide any technical assistance for 
the http://www.regulations.gov 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 Petitions

    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.
    Business confidential submissions that are submitted without the 
required markings, or are not accompanied by a properly marked non-
confidential version, as set forth above, might not be accepted or may 
be considered public documents.

Public Viewing of Review Submissions

    Submissions in response to this notice, except for information 
granted ``business confidential'' status under 15 CFR part 2003.6, will 
be available for public viewing pursuant to 15 CFR part 2007.6 at 
http://www.regulations.gov upon completion of processing. Such 
submissions may be viewed by entering the docket number USTR-2015-0013 
in the search field at http://www.regulations.gov.

William D. Jackson,
Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for the Generalized System 
of Preferences, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.
[FR Doc. 2015-20456 Filed 8-18-15; 8:45 am]