New On-line Tool for Tariff Information
On April 27, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), the Commerce Department’s International Trade Administration (ITA) and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) unveiled a new on-line tool that will help small- and mid-sized exporters find streamlined information on tariffs. The Free Trade Agreement (FTA) Tariff Tool was launched this week during a Web-based demonstration to more than 100 businesses and associations.
The new tool is a part of President Barack Obama’s National Export Initiative (NEI) that aims to double exports by the end of 2014 in support of several million U.S. jobs. The FTA Tariff Tool streamlines tariff information for 85 percent of goods going to 20 markets with which the U.S. has negotiated trade agreements. According to the USTR, ITA and SBA, this is the first time this kind of information has been made available free of charge through one searchable database.
Making information on tariff benefits U.S. companies receive under the current U.S. Free Trade Agreements will enhance small businesses ability to export and will open up these markets to more exporters. SBA Deputy Administrator Marie Johns stated, “Giving small business owners a simple way to navigate the complexities of tariffs and international trade is a crucial step in ensuring they have what they need to grow their business and create jobs.”
The new online tool combines tariff and trade data into a simple, easy-to-search public interface that allows small businesses and other U.S. exporters to find detailed information for the 17 U.S. trade agreement partners and three pending partners. The FTA Tariff Tool empowers the user to perform searches for tariff treatment for specific industrial products under each trade agreement instantly and at a glance. The tool also enables the user to access market and sector reports and other FTA-related information that is useful for small businesses seeking new export opportunities.
Small businesses can access the tool by clicking here. The website also contains an instructional video, a quick start guide, and a user’s manual.