ITC releases tariff elimination review for 1,300 pharmaceutical products
The U.S. International Trade Commission has released the results of its investigation providing information and advice to the Bush administration regarding the elimination of duties for about 1,300 pharmaceutical products and related chemicals.
The products are expected to be added to the Pharmaceutical Appendix of the U.S. Harmonized Tariff Schedule. The United States and 21 other trading countries agreed during the 1995 Uruguay Round to eliminate duties on pharmaceutical products on a periodic basis, an agreement known as the “Pharmaceutical Zero-for-Zero Initiative.” The Pharmaceutical Appendix already covers about 8,250 products.
In 2005 U.S. imports of products included in the Pharmaceutical Zero-for-Zero Initiative totaled more than $58 billion, while U.S. exports of these products exceeded $25 billion. For products proposed for the current update, an estimate limited to only about 10 percent of the proposed items, shows imports of $619 million and exports of $6 million in 2007. “A more precise estimate of imports and exports of items in this update is not possible for many reasons, including the level of proprietary data in this industry,” the ITC report said.
The ITC is often called upon by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, Senate Finance Committee and House Ways and Means Committee to provide objective analysis on trade topics. The ITC makes no recommendations on policy and other matters in its general fact-finding reports.
The ITC’s 121-page pharmaceutical report is available online at http://Hotdocs.usitc.gov//docs/pubs/332/pub3883.pdf .