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Torres Talks Trade Podcast Episode 10 on the Foreign Agents Registration Act

The Foreign Agents Registration Act, FARA, has been making headlines recently, as Washington seeks to crack down on foreign influence in the United States. But the law has a surprising history, and could be in for some major updates in the coming months. In the first of a two-part series, Host Olga Torres is joined by David Laufman, former Chief of the Counterintelligence and Export Controls Section at the Department of Justice to discuss all things FARA. Be sure to tune in next week, for Part 2, where David will discuss high-profile sanctions and export enforcement cases, DOJ voluntary self-disclosures, and C-suite compliance certifications recently announced by DOJ.

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Torres Talks Trade Podcast Episode 9 on U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Global Business Identifier program

In this week’s episode, Host Donna Wedgeworth speaks with Anthony Saranchak, former U.S. Customs Assistant Field Director in Regulatory Audit, to discuss identity theft in U.S. importing and global supply chains and how U.S. Customs and Border Protection is taking a step toward improving supply chain data reliability with the proposed Global Business Identifier program. Find out what this means for businesses and supply chains, and how you can prepare your enterprise as Customs expands the program to the wider industry.

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Key Takeaways from the CFIUS Annual Report for 2021

On Tuesday, August 2, 2022, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (“CFIUS” or “the Committee) released its Annual Report to Congress for calendar year 2021.[1] The report, replete with charts, tables, and graphs visualizing the data and comparing it to prior years, broadly details the work the Committee has done in the past year concerning oversight of foreign investment transactions in areas deemed critical to U.S. national security. There are several key takeaways from the report that are particularly important to international businesses looking to invest in the United States. Read more…

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Torres Talks Trade Podcast Episode 8 on Worker-Centered Trade

The debate between free trade and protectionism is alive and well, and perhaps fiercer than ever, in the United States and abroad. In this week’s episode, host Olga Torres sits down with Steve Charnovitz, professor at the George Washington Law School, to discuss the importance of a worker-centered trade policy, the WTO, the Treasury’s call for “friendshoring” of supply chains, and how the U.S. can promote workers’ rights at home and around the world.

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Torres Talks Trade Podcast Episode 7 on the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS)

This week’s episode discusses the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States “CFIUS,” the U.S. interagency body that reviews foreign investment for national security purposes. Host Olga Torres is joined by Albert Schulz, founder of Kaerus Consulting LLC, which provides a variety CFIUS Mitigation services to clients, to look at the ins and out CFIUS mitigation, and how to ensure international mergers and acquisitions in critical areas proceed smoothly while minimizing risk to national security.

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Trade Alert- DDTC Issues Two Open General License

On July 13, 2022, the U.S. Department of State Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (“DDTC”), as part of a pilot program, issued two Open General Licenses (“OGL”), which were subsequently published via Federal Register on July 20, authorizing the retransfer and reexport of defense articles subject to the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (“ITAR”) within or between Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Like General Licenses issued by the Office of Foreign Assets Control under the U.S. Treasury Department, OGL No.1 and OGL No. 2 apply if the transaction meets the stated requirements, without specific application to DDTC.

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Torres Talks Trade Podcast Episode 6 on Forced Labor in Supply Chains

This week’s episode (below) looks at the U.S. government’s enforcement of laws that combat forced labor in supply chains, including the newly passed Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, as well as the impact of forced labor compliance on Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) initiatives. How can companies ensure their supply chains are compliant and protect against the risk of having their goods seized or detained? Find out as host Olga Torres is joined by Ana Hinojosa, a former Executive Director at U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), a former Deputy Assistant Commissioner for the Office of International Affairs at CBP, and a former Director of Compliance and Facilitation for the World Customs Organization, now President of ABH Global Trade Consulting, and Kelli Thompson, a former Supervisory Import Specialist at CBP and now the CEO of Integrity International Trade Consulting.

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Torres Talks Trade Podcast Episode 5 on U.S. Customs and Border Protection Audits

This week’s episode (below) covers the important topic of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) audits, including how CBP selects companies for audits and how importers should prepare for an audit. Anthony “Tony” Saranchak, Senior Customs Adviser at Torres Trade Advisory, provides insights from his vast experience working as an auditor at CBP.

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Forced Labor and the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act

On June 21, 2022 the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (“UFLPA”) went into effect. It is the latest – and perhaps strongest – tool in the belt of U.S. regulatory and enforcement agencies to combat forced labor. The UFLPA puts the onus on importers to ensure their supply chains and merchandise are free from forced labor. This article will discuss forced labor enforcement generally, the UFLPA, and what it means for importers and how they can comply with the new regulations. Read more…

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BIS’s New Approach to Identifying “Emerging and Foundational Technologies”

On May 23, 2022, the U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of Industry and Security (“BIS”) published a proposed rule identifying new unilateral export controls on four dual-use biological marine toxins, the synthesis and collection of which BIS has identified for evaluation in accordance with the criteria set forth in Section 1758 of the Export Control Reform Act of 2018 (“ECRA”).1 Section 1758 requires BIS to identify and establish appropriate controls on the export, reexport, or transfer (in-country) of “emerging and foundational technologies” that are “essential to the national security of the United States.”2 Importantly, the proposed rule announced a change in BIS’s approach to identifying new technologies of high strategic importance for control: moving forward, BIS will no longer distinguish between “emerging technologies” and “foundational technologies,” but rather “will characterize all technologies identified pursuant to Section 1758 as ‘Section 1758 technologies.’” Read more…

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