North Korea – New U.S. Sanctions Announced. On Wednesday, the Obama Administration announced sanctions designations targeting senior North Korean officials, including Kim Jong Un. The U.S. Department of State issued a report identifying individuals and entities responsible or associated with serious human rights abuses or censorship in North Korea. In tandem, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control announced that eleven individuals and five entities have been sanctioned under Executive Orders 13722 and 13687. Both agency actions were consistent with requirements set forth in the North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act of 2016 (H.R. 757), passed by Congress in February.
TTIP – Negotiators Meet This Week. Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiators are expected to focus on regulatory cooperation during their next round of talks in Brussels this week. U.S. negotiators are unlikely to move on the EU’s demands for more concessions on government procurement and services. The EU is also expected to table proposals for eight out of nine sectors that both sides have decided are subjects for regulatory cooperation: (1) chemicals, (2) cosmetics, (3) engineering, (4) medical devices, (5) pesticides, (6) pharmaceuticals, (7) textiles, and (8) vehicles.