As you may have heard, the long awaited renewal of the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB) process is one step away from becoming reality. The House passed the American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act by a vote of 415-2, and the Senate unanimously passed the same legislation on May 10th. The President is expected to sign the bill shortly.
This legislation is uncommonly popular, and uncommonly bipartisan—and with good reason. The benefit here is a potential boon to downstream U.S. manufacturers, with as much as $500,000 in annual duty savings for each covered product. Because benefits are limited to products with no or limited domestic production, there is little political downside to granting such relief.
What you need to know.
In the short term, there will be just one opportunity to obtain temporary duty suspension via the MTB process—a 60-day window this Fall during which a petition can be filed with the USITC. (The next opportunity to take advantage of the MTB process won’t be until 2019.) As a result, the time to begin preparing is now.
The main objective at this point should be to identify the products you import and pay duties on which either (1) are not manufactured in the United States or (2) are not manufactured in sufficient quantities to fulfill your sourcing requirements. The $500,000 limitation on duty savings is calculated on a per article basis. Consequently, to maximize duty benefits, the goal is to identify potentially eligible articles by as narrow a description as possible.
If you are interested in submitting a petition, please let us know. We have extensive experience with the MTB process, and would be glad to help.