U.S. Senate Fails to Extend GSP

The 111th meeting of the U.S. Congress adjourned on December 23, 2010 without extending the Generalized Systems of Preferences (GSP) program which subsequently expired on December 31, 2010. Although the House of Representatives passed the Omnibus Trade Act of 2010, including GSP trade preference program, on December 15, 2010, the Senate failed to reach agreement on longer term extensions of the GSP as well as the Andean Trade Promotion and Drug Eradication Act (ATPDEA) and Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) programs. 

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) issued a notification via Automated Broker Interface (ABI) that importers may continue to apply the GSP special program indicators "A" and "A+" on eligible goods entered or withdrawn from warehouse after December 31, 2010, however, they must pay the applicable Column 1 rate of duty.

It is expected that the GSP program will be reauthorized in the 112th Congress including provision for retroactive recovery of any duties that importers must pay as of January 1, 2011, for goods that would be duty-free if GSP program was in force.

CBP noted that GSP program indicators will enable CBP to liquidate all GSP preference claims with a refund if the program is reauthorized with retroactivity.