September 30, 2009
News Release 09-073
Inv. No. 332-227
Contact: Peg O'Laughlin, 202-205-1819

IMPORTS UNDER CBERA CONTINUE TO BENEFIT U.S. CONSUMERS, SAYS USITC

Dominican Republic's 2007 Exit from CBERA Contributes to Drop in Imports under CBERA

The overall effect of the Caribbean Basin Recovery Act (CBERA) on the U.S. economy continues to be negligible while the effect on U.S. consumers and beneficiary countries is small but positive. Imports benefiting from CBERA continued to fall in 2007 and 2008, reports the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) in its report The Impact of the Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act, Nineteenth Report, 2007-2008.

Lower imports in all of the leading product categories as well as the exit of the Dominican Republic from the CBERA during 2007 contributed to the decline, according to the report.

The ITC, an independent, nonpartisan, factfinding federal agency, recently issued its 19th report in a series monitoring imports under the CBERA. The CBERA program, operative since January 1, 1984, affords preferential tariff treatment to most products of designated Caribbean, Central American, and South American countries, 19 of which were CBERA beneficiaries for all of 2008.

The ITC report covers the impact of the CBERA, as modified, on the United States, with particular emphasis on calendar year 2008. The CBERA requires the Commission to prepare a biennial report assessing both the actual and the probable future effects of the CBERA on the U.S. economy generally, on U.S. industries, and on U.S. consumers. The report also covers the impact of the overall preference program on the beneficiary countries themselves. Following are highlights of the 2007-2008 report.

The Impact of the Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act, Nineteenth Report, 2007-2008 (Inv. No. 332-227, USITC Publication No. 4102, September 2009) is available at http://www.usitc.gov/publications/332/pub4102.pdf. The publication will also be available at federal depository libraries in the United States. A CD-ROM or printed copy of the report may be requested by emailing pubrequest@usitc.gov, calling 202-205-2000, or writing to the Office of the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street, SW, Washington, DC 20436. Requests may also be faxed to 202-205-2104.

ITC general factfinding investigations, such as this one, cover matters related to tariffs or trade and are generally conducted at the request of the U.S. Trade Representative, the Senate Committee on Finance, or the House Committee on Ways and Means. The resulting reports convey the Commission's objective findings and independent analyses on the subjects investigated. The Commission makes no recommendations on policy or other matters in its general factfinding reports. Upon completion of each investigation, the ITC submits its findings and analyses to the requestor. General factfinding investigation reports are subsequently released to the public, unless they are classified by the requestor for national security reasons.

-- 30 --