Key Notes:

  • ITC deadline for MTB petitions is December 12, 2016.
  • Petitions must be submitted via the ITC’s designated secure web portal.
  • MTB petition process is an opportunity for U.S. companies to suspend or reduce duties on imported products.

On October 14, 2016, the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) began accepting Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB) petitions for duty suspension or reduction. Petitions must be submitted electronically through the ITC’s designated secure web portal, the MTB Petition System, by 5:15 p.m. Eastern time on December 12, 2016. The ITC will not accept petitions submitted in paper or in any other form or format.

As discussed in our May 20, 2016 bulletin, with passage of the American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act of 2016, MTB petitions may be filed by any members of the public who are likely beneficiaries of the duty suspension or reduction or by a legal representative. A successful MTB petition will cover a “noncontroversial” or “noncompetitive” product:

  • No domestic producer objects to the import duty elimination or reduction for the product;
  • The import duty elimination or reduction for the product is determined to be in the interest of U.S. “downstream” producers and consumers; and
  • The import duty elimination or reduction for the product must not result in a loss to the U.S. Department of the Treasury of more than $500,000 in annual revenue.

A separate petition must be filed for each product within the 60-day petition process period. The ITC will then conduct a 45-day notice and comment period on whetherindividual requests threaten U.S. domestic producers. This period will be followed by the ITC’s report to Congress suggesting products for inclusion in afinal MTB to amend Chapter 99 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States.

Companies interested in obtaining duty relief through the MTB petition process should immediately begin gathering the materials needed for filing. Persons filing petitions should be aware that the ITC portal does not allow for edits, amendments or modifications of any kind after the petition has been submitted. Accordingly, the online application process should only begin once all materials have been collected. The ITC has posted a Handbook on MTB Filing Procedures and a Before You File guidance document that provide helpful information on petition preparation and filing.