On 18 February 2019, the Department for International Trade (DIT) announced the signing of the UK-Israel Trade and Partnership Agreement, which replicates the existing trading arrangements under the EU-Israel Association Agreement as far as possible. It will come into effect as soon as the implementation period ends in January 2021, or on 29 March 2019 if the UK leaves the EU without a deal. The trade continuity agreement simplifies trade and allows businesses to trade as freely as they do now, without any additional barriers or tariffs. The agreement will see British businesses and consumers benefitting from continued trade with Israel after the UK leaves the European Union. The announcement stated, in part:
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine (MFA) announced that on 21 January 2019, cabinet ministers of Ukraine and Israel signed the 1500 page Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in Jerusalem during the official visit of the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, to Israel.
On December 21, 2018, the President signed the Presidential Proclamation to Take Certain Actions Under the African Growth and Opportunity Act and for Other Purposes (not yet published in the Federal Register). The Proclamation:
- Terminates the designation of Mauritania as a beneficiary sub‑Saharan African country for purposes of section 506A of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended (the “Trade Act”), effective January 1, 2019, and deletes “Islamic Republic of Mauritania” from the list of beneficiary sub-Saharan African countries in general note 16(a) to the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (“HTS”). The modification to the HTS set forth above shall be effective with respect to articles that are entered for consumption, or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption, on or after January 1, 2019.
On October 11, 2018, Global Affairs Canada published Notice to Importers: Item 82 – Steel Goods (Serial No. 911) which informs importers of the procedures governing the administration of provisional safeguards, in the form of tariff rate quotas (TRQ), for certain steel goods that are listed in item 82 on the Import Control List (ICL). These goods were added to the ICL to implement the Order Imposing a Surtax on the Importation of Certain Steel Goods (Surtax Order). The Surtax Order establishes provisional safeguards in the form of TRQs for steel goods matching the product descriptions specified in the column 2 of the Schedule to the Surtax Order, above which a twenty-five percent surtax will apply.
On May 28, 2018, Global Affairs Canada announced that the Hon. François-Phillippe Champagne, Minister of International Trade, and Eli Cohen, Israel’s Minister of the Economy and Industry, signed the modernized Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement (CIFTA), known as the Canada – Israel Free Trade Amending Protocol 2018. Minister Champagne underlined the importance of the agreement as an engine of growth and prosperity for both countries. The announcement said:
On January 24, 2018, the Department of Defense (DoD), General Services Administration (GSA), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) published in the Federal Register a final rule [FAC 2005–97; FAR Case 2018–001; Docket No. 2018–0004; Sequence No. 1]
On December 27, 2017, the Diario Oficial (Official Gazette) published the US Dollar and national money (Peso) thresholds for government procurements subject to free trade agreements. The Secretary of Public Function notified the amounts in Office No. UNCP/309/ TU/786/2017. The amounts are in effect from January 1, 2018 through June 30, 2018.
On December 27, 2017, the Federal Register published Proclamation 9687 of December 22, 2017 – To Take Certain Actions Under the African Growth and Opportunity Act and for Other Purposes. The Proclamation:
According to the U.S. Foreign Agricultural Service GAIN Report 102017, the head of the Israeli Customs Directorate has announced that its services will be offline January 10- 14, 2018. The down-time is needed for the installation of a new computerized system: Shaar Olami (Global Gate). The new system aims to improve the level of service in customs and provide rapid transit of goods to and from the State of Israel. This will enter into force on Sunday January 14, 2018. The GAIN report states:
On June 26, 2017, the Secretary of Public Function – Sub-secretary of Administrative Responsibilities and Public Contracts published in the Diario Oficial de la Federación (the Official Federal Gazette) a circular [Oficio №. UNCP/309/TU/370/2017] with tables showing in national currency the thresholds under the various free trade agreements of which Mexico is a party that apply from July 1, 2017 through December 31, 2017, when foreign goods and services are to be offered to the Government.