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DTI chief calls for clothing and footwear to be included in the US GSP

In a meeting with business leaders in Washington, D.C., President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. called for the renewal of the United States Generalized System of Preference (US GSP), but the top trade official of the nation reiterated the Philippines’ demand to include clothing and footwear in the tariff privileges.

Alfredo Pascual, secretary of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), said he informed US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo of the Philippine government’s request to extend the zero-tariff to Philippine-made clothing and footwear during their side meetings late on Wednesday night.

According to Pascual, he also emphasized the value of the US GSP renewal for the Philippines.

The US GSP, which offers $0 tax for 3,500 tariff lines, is up for reauthorization, and the Philippine government is advocating for it.

Through this preferential treatment for tariffs, roughly 70% of the nation’s exports to the US market are subject to tariffs.

However, the US Congress has yet to reauthorize it, so it will expire on December 31, 2020.

DTI Undersecretary Ceferino Rodolfo stated, “So far from the (US) executive (side), what (they) are saying to the Secretary is that they are totally supportive of the reauthorization. We are hopeful that similar to the past, it will be reauthorized notwithstanding the expiration of the previous one.

According to Rodolfo, the US Executive Department concurs with the clause stating that the tariffs paid since 2021 will be refunded.

When Marcos visited the US and met in person with US President Joe Biden, Pascual and Rodolfo were a member of his group.

According to the DTI director, they are meeting with at least eight businesses in the US in an effort to increase investments and create jobs for the Philippines.

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