Congressional conferees reach agreement on customs legislation

Agreement on customs legislation

House and Senate negotiators today reached a bicameral, bipartisan compromise on a conference agreement for H.R. 644, the “Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015.”

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The legislation authorizes U.S. Customs and Border Protection and puts in place effective tools to strengthen trade enforcement at the border and facilitate the efficient movement of legitimate trade and travel.

According to a statement from the Senate Finance chairman, the conference agreement includes measures that promote:

“…legitimate trade facilitation and works to preserve one of America’s most important economic assets: intellectual property, helping to prevent counterfeit and illicit goods from entering our nation.”

Background

Earlier this year, customs legislation was reported out of the Senate Finance Committee. The bill, the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015, went on to pass the Senate in May by a vote of 78 to 20.

Later, customs enforcement legislation, H.R. 1907, was reported out of the Ways and Means Committee, and as amended, passed by the House of Representatives in June 2015, by a vote of 240 to 190.   

The conference report reconciles the differences between the House and Senate versions of the bills, and formally authorizes U.S. Customs and Border Protection, facilitates the legitimate trade of goods, and combats violations of U.S. trade laws.  Congress is expected to vote on the conference report and then send it to the president to be signed into law.

Documents

Read the bill text [PDF 994 KB]

Read a summary [PDF 24 KB] of the conference report

Read a joint explanatory statement [PDF 471 KB] of the conference committee

 

For more information, contact a professional with KPMG’s Trade & Customs practice:

Douglas Zuvich | +1 (312) 665-1022 | dzuvich@kpmg.com

Andrew Siciliano | +1 (631) 425-6057 | asiciliano@kpmg.com

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