UN GHS Subcommittee Meeting

NAEGA volunteer Jess McCluer has returned from a very successful trip to Geneva for a meeting of the UN’s Subcommittee of Experts on the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals. On top of the agenda was consideration of a non-binding annex on dust explosion hazards developed by the Subcommittee Correspondence Group. Over the past few years the Subcommittee has been considering classifying grain as an explosive material. Development of the non-binding annex was undertaken by the Correspondence Group, on which Jess sits, as a way solution to prevent the classification of grain as explosive. At this meeting the non-binding annex was submitted for consideration and, after some discussion, the annex was provisionally adopted for full consideration of by the UN Transportation of Dangerous Goods and GHS Committee in December. The conclusion of this effort in the Subcommittee means that the U.S. delegation has been prevented from creating a binding chapter to the GH on the classification of combustible dust that would have included whole grain.

A trip report, and more details on these developments, will be available soon.

NAEGA-APPAMEX Forum Trip Report

A trip report is now available for Gary’s travel to Cancun, Mexico to participate in and present before the 24th Annual NAEGA-APPAMEX Forum. In Cancun, Gary presented before the forum on Agri-Bulks Trade Repositioning for the Agri-Food Industry in Mexico; hosted a private, off-the-record breakfast with USDA FAS, the Canadian Embassy and the Government of Mexico to discuss the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA); and briefed the APPAMEX Board of Directors on NAFTA negotiations and objectives. The dialogue and networking effectively resulted in expanded good will and continued interest in placing a priority U.S. agricultural exports to serve Mexico’s needs. 

A copy of the trip report can be found here.

USTR Releases NAFTA Negotiating Objectives

On Monday, July 17 the U.S. Trade Representative released the Trump Administration’s list of negotiating objectives for the modernization of the North American Free Trade Agreement. The objectives include negotiating parameters in 22 areas including: trade in goods, SPS, customs, TBT, regulatory practices, services, digital trade, investment, intellectual property, transparency, state owned enterprises, competition policy, labor, environment, anti-corruption, trade remedies, procurement, small and medium sized enterprises, energy and dispute settlement. The objectives also included, for the first time, specific negotiating priorities regarding currency manipulation. These negotiating objectives are mandated by Trade Promotion Authority legislation and will be used as a blueprint for negotiations that could begin as early as August 16.

A copy of the objectives can be found here.