Temporary reductions or suspensions of duties on certain imports under the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (“MTB”) are set to expire on December 31, 2009. The MTB provides temporary reduction or suspension of duties on certain US imports set forth in Chapter 99 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (“HTSUS”), as well as other technical corrections to the HTSUS. The MTB suspends tariffs on hundreds of imported products not produced in the United States, but that are used as the basis of manufacturing products in the United States.
The process to enact new MTB legislation that will replace the existing MTB prior to its December 31, 2009 expiration is still in progress in the 111th Congress. As of July 20, 2009, the House Ways and Means Committee had largely completed its list of products to be covered by the MTB. The Senate Finance Committee has not begun the process to pass the MTB, as it is still finalizing its own plans for how to move forward with the MTB. The Senate Finance Committee leaders are close to reaching an agreement on increased transparency in the process, which businesses and associations in favor of the MTB hope will not delay passage of the measure.