Potential US Japan deal looks to boost US agriculture exports.

selective focus photo of cheese and grater on plate

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As promised during his campaign, President Trump withdrew the US from the Trans Pacific Partnership – leaving Canada, Mexico and Australia as the major players; opting instead to enter into bilateral agreements with individual countries.
After the TPP took effect this January, US farm exports to Japan dropped by 2% for the first half of the year, with a projected annual net farm income loss of $4.4 billion annually. This could be due to US exports of beef to Japan now subject to a 38.5% duty, ground pork at 20% and some cheeses at 40%. The lack of a trade deal has also impacted
Japan’s exporters of steel and aluminum to the US. The President has previously threatened Japan with duties on auto imports.
The US and Japan have reached an agreement in principle expect to make the trade deal official in the upcoming months.

Sudan joins the UN’s Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards.

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Credit: Wikipedia 

In October 2017, the US revoked certain sanctions against Sudan and the Sudanese government. These sanctions include those put in place by then-President Clinton (Executive Order 13067) and then-President Bush (Eexecutive Order 13412). However, OFAC sanctions related to the conflict in Darfur: EO 13400, EO 13067.

Following the removal of sanctions, the Sudanese government has made efforts to increase foreign investment – with the Sudanese state minister touring Germany, Bahrain and other countries in December 2017.

In a move to further increase foreign investment to Sudan, on Tuesday, April 3rd, Sudan joined the network of countries that agree to enforce and recognize other nation’s arbitral awards. By joining this network, the Sudanese government hopes to increase confidence of foreign investors – especially in Sudan’s oil and gas sector.

Nations that sign the UN Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awardshe Signatories to the New York Convention agree to recognize arbitration agreements and enforce awards issued in other countries party to the rules. This agreement is viewed as the basis for international arbitration and allows a way for companies to settle commercial disputes.

The removal of 20 years of trade and financial sanctions will allow U.S. citizens and companies to now do business in Sudan, including deals with their government. However, U.S. citizens and companies are still probibited from conducting business with parties on the OFAC list.

If you or your company is planning to invest in Sudan, contact our offices, we can verify compliance with the most recent OFAC list and assist your company in taking all efforts to maintain export compliance – David Hsu, 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.