[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 94 (Wednesday, May 15, 2013)]
[Notices]
[Pages 28623-28625]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-11503]


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INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMISSION

[Investigation Nos. TA-131-038 and TA-2104-030


U.S.-Trans-Pacific Partnership Free Trade Agreement Including 
Japan: Advice on the Probable Economic Effect of Providing Duty-Free 
Treatment for Imports

AGENCY: United States International Trade Commission.

ACTION: Institution of investigations and scheduling of hearing.

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SUMMARY: Following receipt on April 30, 2013, of a request from the 
United States Trade Representative (USTR), the Commission instituted 
investigation Nos. TA-131-038 and TA-2104-030, U.S.-Trans-Pacific 
Partnership Free Trade Agreement Including Japan: Advice on the 
Probable Economic Effect of Providing Duty-Free Treatment for Imports.

DATES: May 28, 2013: Deadline for filing requests to appear at the 
public hearing.
    May 29, 2013: Deadline for filing pre-hearing briefs and 
statements.
    June 11, 2013: Public hearing.
    June 17, 2013: Deadline for filing post-hearing briefs and 
statements.
    June 17, 2013: Deadline for filing all other written submissions.

[[Page 28624]]

    August 21, 2013: Transmittal of Commission report to the USTR.

ADDRESSES: All Commission offices, including the Commission's hearing 
rooms, are located in the United States International Trade Commission 
Building, 500 E Street SW., Washington, DC. All written submissions 
should be addressed to the Secretary, United States International Trade 
Commission, 500 E Street SW., Washington, DC 20436. The public record 
for this investigation may be viewed on the Commission's electronic 
docket (EDIS) at http://www.usitc.gov/secretary/edis.htm.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Karl Tsuji, Project Leader (202-205-
3434 or [email protected]), or Kathryn Lundquist, Deputy Project 
Leader (202-205-2563 or kathryn.lundquist @usitc.gov), for information 
specific to these investigations. For information on the legal aspects 
of these investigations, contact William Gearhart of the Commission's 
Office of the General Counsel (202-205-3091 or 
[email protected]). The media should contact Margaret 
O'Laughlin, Office of External Relations (202-205-1819 or 
[email protected]). Hearing-impaired individuals may obtain 
information on this matter by contacting the Commission's TDD terminal 
at 202-205-1810. General information concerning the Commission may also 
be obtained by accessing its Internet server (http://www.usitc.gov). 
Persons with mobility impairments who will need special assistance in 
gaining access to the Commission should contact the Office of the 
Secretary at 202-205-2000.
    Background: In his letter of April 30, 2013, the USTR advised the 
Commission that he has informed the Congress of the President's 
intention to commence negotiations with Japan in the context of the 
Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, and accordingly is 
requesting that the Commission provide certain advice under section 131 
of the Trade Act of 1974 (19 U.S.C. 2151) and an assessment under 
section 2104(b)(2) of the Trade Act of 2002 (19 U.S.C. 3804(b)(2)) with 
respect to the effects of providing duty-free treatment for imports 
from all 11 countries.
    More specifically, the USTR, under authority delegated by the 
President and pursuant to section 131 of the Trade Act of 1974, 
requested that the Commission provide a report containing its advice as 
to the probable economic effect of providing duty-free treatment for 
imports of products from Japan and the other ten countries currently 
participating in the TPP negotiations (Australia, Brunei Darussalam, 
Canada, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and 
Vietnam) on (i) industries in the United States producing like or 
directly competitive products, and (ii) consumers. The USTR asked that 
the Commission's analysis consider each article in chapters 1 through 
97 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS) for 
which tariffs will remain, taking into account implementation of U.S. 
commitments in the World Trade Organization and under U.S. free trade 
agreements in force between the United States and TPP negotiating 
partner countries. The USTR asked that the advice be based on the HTS 
in effect during 2013 and trade data for 2012. The USTR also requested 
that the Commission, in preparing its advice, assume that any known 
U.S. nontariff barriers will not be applicable to such imports, and 
that the Commission note in its report any instance in which the 
continued application of a U.S. nontariff barrier would result in 
different advice with respect to the effect of the removal of the duty.
    In addition, the USTR requested that the Commission prepare an 
assessment, as described in section 2104(b)(2) of the Trade Act of 
2002, of the probable economic effects of eliminating tariffs on 
imports from the eleven countries of those agricultural products on the 
list attached to his letter on (i) industries in the United States 
producing the product concerned, and (ii) the U.S. economy as a whole. 
The USTR's request and list of agricultural products are posted on the 
Commission's Web site at www.usitc.gov. The USTR asked that the 
Commission identify in its report, among other things, any changes in 
its advice from the advice delivered on the TPP on November 19, 2012, 
that did not include Japan. The USTR also stated that the Commission 
need not repeat analysis and discussion included in that earlier 
report.
    As requested, the Commission will provide its report to the USTR by 
August 21, 2013. The USTR indicated that those sections of the 
Commission's report that relate to the advice and assessment of 
probable economic effects will be classified. The USTR also indicated 
that he considers the Commission's report to be an inter-agency 
memorandum that will contain pre-decisional advice and be subject to 
the deliberative process privilege.
    This is the fourth such request that the Commission has received 
from the USTR with respect to the TPP negotiations. In response to an 
earlier request by the USTR after Canada and Mexico joined the 
negotiations, the Commission, delivered a report to the USTR on 
November 19, 2012, containing its advice and assessment in 
investigation Nos. TA-131-036 and TA-2104-028, U.S.-Trans-Pacific 
Partnership Free Trade Agreement Including Canada and Mexico: Advice on 
Probable Economic Effect of Providing Duty-Free Treatment for Imports, 
relating to the effects of a possible free trade agreement with ten 
countries.
    In response to another request by the USTR after Malaysia joined 
the negotiations, the Commission delivered a report to the USTR on 
January 7, 2011, containing its advice and assessment in investigation 
Nos. TA-131-035 and TA-2104-027, U.S.-Trans-Pacific Partnership Free 
Trade Agreement Including Malaysia: Advice on Probable Economic Effect 
of Providing Duty-Free Treatment for Imports after Malaysia joined the 
negotiations, providing certain advice on the effects of providing 
duty-free treatment for imports for the eight countries.
    In response to the initial request from the USTR, the Commission 
delivered a report to the USTR on June 2, 2010, containing its advice 
and assessment in investigation Nos. TA-131-034 and TA-2104-026, U.S.-
Trans-Pacific Partnership Free Trade Agreement: Advice on Probable 
Economic Effect of Providing Duty-Free Treatment for Imports, relating 
to the effects of a possible free trade agreement with seven countries 
(Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and 
Vietnam).
    Public Hearing: A public hearing in connection with these 
investigations will be held at the U.S. International Trade Commission 
Building, 500 E Street SW., Washington, DC, beginning at 9:30 a.m., 
June 11, 2013. Requests to appear at the public hearing should be filed 
with the Secretary not later than 5:15 p.m., May 28, 2013. All pre-
hearing briefs and statements should be filed not later than 5:15 p.m., 
May 29, 2013; and all post-hearing briefs and statements should be 
filed not later than 5:15 p.m., June 17, 2013. All briefs should be 
filed in accordance with the requirements in the ``Submissions'' 
section below.
    Written Submissions: In lieu of or in addition to participating in 
the hearing and filing briefs and statements relating to the hearing, 
interested parties are invited to file written submissions concerning 
these investigations. All written submissions should be addressed to 
the Secretary, and should be received not later than 5:15 p.m., June 
17, 2013. All written submissions must conform to the provisions of

[[Page 28625]]

section 201.8 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (19 
CFR 201.8). Section 201.8 and the Commission's Handbook on Filing 
Procedures require that interested parties file documents 
electronically on or before the filing deadline and submit eight (8) 
true paper copies by 12:00 noon eastern time on the next business day. 
In the event that confidential treatment of a document is requested, 
interested parties must file, at the same time as the eight (8) paper 
copies, at least four (4) additional true paper copies in which the 
confidential information must be deleted (see the following paragraph 
for further information regarding confidential business information). 
Persons with questions regarding electronic filing should contact the 
Secretary (202-205-2000).
    Any submissions that contain confidential business information must 
also conform to the requirements of section 201.6 of the Commission's 
Rules of Practice and Procedure (19 CFR 201.6). Section 201.6 of the 
rules requires that the cover of the document and the individual pages 
be clearly marked as to whether they are the ``confidential'' or ``non-
confidential'' version, and that the confidential business information 
be clearly identified by means of brackets. All written submissions, 
except for confidential business information, will be made available 
for inspection by interested parties.
    The Commission may include some or all of the confidential business 
information submitted in the course of the investigations in the report 
it sends to the USTR. The Commission will not otherwise publish any 
confidential business information in a manner that would reveal the 
operations of the firm supplying the information.

    Issued: May 9, 2013.

    By order of the Commission.
Lisa R. Barton,
Acting Secretary to the Commission.
[FR Doc. 2013-11503 Filed 5-14-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 7020-02-P