Category: WTO

Adam Reiser: Trump administration struggles to enforce ‘Buy American’ EO 13788

Nearly eight months after President Donald J. Trump signed his executive order “Buy American and Hire American,” an expert on certifying whether goods are made in the United States shared with Big League Politics the challenges in certification and enforcing Trump’s intentions.

 

 

 

Adam Reiser, the CEO and founder of Certified, Inc., told Big League Politics he is seeing no action in the executive branch to move the president’s executive order forward.

A source familiar with how the White House drafted the executive order told Big League Politics: “There are zero teeth in it, you know? Let’s of fanfare, lots of publicity, back-slapping and hand-shaking with Trump–and now, it is getting resisted, like as if it meant nothing.”

According to the president’s directive, all agencies were supposed to have turned into both the Department of Commerce and the Office of Management and Budget how they plan to comply. These plans are to include, searchable databases of certified vendors, storage arrangements for the documents and simplifications of their internal procurement procedures.

Reiser said Trump’s executive order was the president’s attempt to bring federal procurement back in synch with the law.

The Buy American Act of 1933 was signed by President Herbert Hoover the day before he handed over the White House to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The Act was championed by Rep. Joseph W. Byrne, (D.-Tenn.), then the chairman of the House Appropriations Committee and later Speaker of the House.

Byrne’s idea was that given support by the Hearst newspapers and by Hoover’s Commissioner of Customs Francis F.A. Eble, who would go on to start the Buy American Club.

“The law says that the U.S. government has to show preferential treatment to U.S. manufacturers,” Reiser said. “It is so the government has to buy from its own.”

Reiser said that from the 1970s, the federal government has been providing waivers to the 1933 law. “In the 1980s and 1990s, it has picked up big-time.”

When the president signed Executive Order 13788, the White House was optimistic.

President Donald J. Trump holding his Executive Order 13788 at the April 18, 2017 Kenosha, Wis., signing ceremony. (White House photo)

A senior administration official speaking on background on Easter Monday, the day before the executive order was signed in the headquarters of the tool company Snap-On in Kenosha, Wisconsin, said the executive order would correct the abuse of the Buy American Act waiver process.

“Okay, so the culture immediately changes across the agencies.  We have a lax enforcement, lax monitoring, lax compliance,” the official said. Continue reading “Adam Reiser: Trump administration struggles to enforce ‘Buy American’ EO 13788”

Trump tells manufacturers he will cut regulations, taxes, but must reshore

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Was That Steak Raised In The USA? Soon, It’ll Be Hard To Know

Was That Steak Raised In The USA? Soon, It'll Be Hard To Know
Country-of-origin labels — like this one, on a package of steak at a grocery store in Lincoln, Neb. — tell consumers where their meat comes from. | Grant Gerlock/NET News

An attachment to the last-minute spending proposal going before Congress this week would end a six-year trade dispute between the U.S. and Canada. If it’s passed, as seems likely, the omnibus budget bill would repeal a law called COOL that requires “country-of-origin labels” on meat. Continue reading “Was That Steak Raised In The USA? Soon, It’ll Be Hard To Know”

Is the Made in USA Label Compatible with WTO Law?

Is the Made in USA Label Compatible with WTO Law?The Made in USA label is a country of origin type of label that indicates that a product is ’all or virtually all’ made in the United States (US). Continue reading “Is the Made in USA Label Compatible with WTO Law?”

The Not So COOL Reason You Won’t Know Where Your Steak Came From

The Not So COOL Reason You May Soon Not Know Where Your Steak Came From

Cases of bovine spongiform encephalopathy—mad cow disease—have been reported in Brazil as recently as 2014. When a cow was found to have died from the neurogenerative disease, which humans can contract by eating meat from sick animals, in 2012, a number of countries suspended beef imports from Brazil as a precaution. The United States was not among them. Continue reading “The Not So COOL Reason You Won’t Know Where Your Steak Came From”

What Do Horses and Beavers Have in Common? They May Both Be in Your Burger

What Do Horses and Beavers Have in Common? They May Both Be in Your Burger
(Photo: Francois Nascimbeni/Getty Images)

A pair of studies find that meat purchased in grocery stores and online isn’t always what the labels indicate. Continue reading “What Do Horses and Beavers Have in Common? They May Both Be in Your Burger”

USTR Tells WTO That COOL Damages Are Much Lower Than Estimated

Beef Imports from FMD Infected Brazil & Argentina Approved, USTR Tells WTO That COOL Damages Are Much Lower Than Estimated

Last week, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) filed a legal brief in the World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute over mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL), arguing that the $3 billion sought by Canada and Mexico in retaliatory tariffs are a dramatic overestimation of damages. Continue reading “USTR Tells WTO That COOL Damages Are Much Lower Than Estimated”