"If foreign actors choose to violate our trade laws, we must ensure they face serious consequences." — Co-sponsoring Rep. Charles Boustany (R-LA)
This bill — the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act — was designed to ensure that U.S. officials have the authority to enforce trade agreements with other countries.
It would establish guidelines for enforcing free trade agreements that address health and safety regulations, intellectual property rights, and not letting other countries get away with shirking antidumping and countervailing duty orders. (Antidumping laws prevent foreign competitors from flooding the market with underpriced goods. Countervailing duty orders are basically fees that cancel out an imported good that was subsidized by a foreign government.)
Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) would be directed to train their officers on how to enforce trade agreements. These agencies would send an annual strategic plan to Congress on trade facilitation and enforcement. When creating the plan, they would be able to ask advice from federal agencies, international organizations, and private sector organizations in developing the strategic plan.
Protocols would be created and taught to CPB personnel for detecting the infringement of intellectual property on cargo imported into the U.S.
There are also a number of miscellaneous provisions in this bill, like: An import broker who is found guilty of conspiring to or committing an act of terrorism would lose their license (among other things, we're sure).
Also, a loophole allowing the U.S. to accept imports from other countries that were clearly created with forced or indentured labor would be closed. Basically, no more goods from other countries created with labor that doesn't meet human rights standards.
The importance of the U.S.-Israel trade relationship would also be emphasized, and the U.S. would discourage foreign countries from boycotting, divesting, or sanctioning Israel. The President would be required to report instances of politically-motivated instances of these actions to Congress.