Today, House Democratic leaders announced that legislation sponsored by Congresswoman Linda Sánchez (CA-39) will be included as part of the Democrats' "Make It In America" plan to grow manufacturing jobs. The bipartisan Enforcing Orders and Reducing Customs Evasion (ENFORCE) Act of 2011 (H.R. 3057), sponsored by Congresswoman Sánchez and Congressman Bill Long (R-MO), will help U.S. Customs and Border Protection enforce trade rules and prevent illegal imports. The ENFORCE Act would establish new procedures for investigating claims against foreign manufacturers for evading anti-dumping and countervailing duty orders.
"I am pleased this important trade legislation is being included in the "Make It In America' manufacturing plan," said Congresswoman Sánchez. "For far too long, U.S. manufacturers have been undermined by foreign competitors and their fraudulent schemes to avoid paying the duties they owe. We have to support the American manufacturing sector if we want to create more good-paying jobs here at home. American manufacturers deserve a level playing field, and the ENFORCE Act will ensure that Customs agents will aggressively enforce anti-dumping and countervailing duty orders."
Congresswoman Sánchez also introduced the ENFORCE Act in the 111th Congress. Under the ENFORCE Act, domestic producers will be able to petition U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to investigate possible antidumping and countervailing duty evasions. The ENFORCE Act puts in place timelines for CBP to make preliminary and final determinations about whether an importer is engaged in duty evasion.
Antidumping duties are imposed when it is established that foreign goods are being sold (or "dumped") in the U.S. at prices below the prices in the home market. Countervailing duties are imposed when foreign goods receive illegal subsidies that artificially hold down their prices. The duties are meant to even out these illegal practices so that American and foreign goods are competing on a more level playing field when it comes to prices. Those who work to evade these duties are not only breaking the law, they are hurting U.S. businesses and killing jobs.