Congressman Ander Crenshaw, a member of the House Appropriations Committee, today( 8/7) joined with Coach, Inc. Distribution Center representatives in outlining the positive economic impact of the GSP Update for Production Diversification and Trade Enhancement Act (GSP Update Act - H.R. 6307) -- international trade legislation Crenshaw introduced in the House on Thursday, August 2.
He reviewed the provisions of the legislation at press availability at the Coach, Inc. Distribution Center in Jacksonville with company representatives on Tuesday, August 7.
"In these tough economic times, Congress must be vigilant in allowing positive reforms to federal law that would promote economic growth and job creation. That's what this bill does for the travel goods industry in Florida and across the nation," said Crenshaw. "With its approval, travel goods, such as the purses, briefcases, and backpacks, would be made eligible for approval as duty-free products under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) Program. That's a "win-win' for Coach here in Jacksonville and the travel good industry nationwide and would give U.S. businesses viable market alternatives to China which is not a GSP country. American business need tools to help them move forward, and I am strongly encouraging my House colleagues to support me in an effort to strengthen opportunities for this sector of our economy."
Angus McRae, Executive Vice President, Global Operations, COACH, underscored the impact of the bill, stating, "The GSP UPDATE Act is important legislation that will provide meaningful benefits to COACH and our industry through providing sourcing alternatives and lowering costs. We thank the Congressman for his support of the legislation and introducing it in the House of Representatives."
BACKGROUND ON H.R. 6307:
The GSP program long has provided commercial opportunities to developing countries. When GSP was first established in 1974 travel goods items were statutorily exempted from the program. However, the market conditions of the past no longer exist -- there is now finite production of travel goods in the United States. If this bill is enacted, interested parties could petition the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to request specific eligible items be added to GSP. Only those items which have undergone an extensive inter-agency review and determined by the independent U.S. International Trade Commission to be non-import sensitive would be given duty-free entrance from GSP beneficiary countries.