Washington, DC – Internet Association Director, Trade Policy Jordan Haas issued the following statement on the release of the proposed changes to U.S. law that the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) requested from Congress in order to bring the U.S. into compliance with the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). These changes included granting USTR broad flexibility to lower the U.S. express shipments (de minimis) threshold level now or in the future:
“USTR should not ask Congress to reverse course on a successful policy that bolsters American trade leadership. A consistent, high de minimis threshold benefits the entire American e-commerce system, including thousands of small businesses that use the internet to export and import. Congress recognized this and raised the U.S. de minimis threshold in 2015 for the first time in nearly 20 years. America’s digital trade surplus has grown substantially since 2015 and now represents $196 billion in net exports. Those exports mean jobs and growth in every state and community across America.
“Ninety-five percent of the world’s consumers are outside the U.S.’s borders, and USTR’s proposed provision in the implementing legislation would force small businesses to navigate a complicated, confusing net of customs rules. USTR should ensure this language is not in the final implementing legislation, as it will undermine the robust digital trade provisions in USMCA.”