CSMS# 19-000303 - NMFS Update: Newly Designated Officials by the Government of Mexico

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06/13/2019 09:38 AM EDT

Trade Policy Updates

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) published a notice in the Federal Register on August 28, 2018, entitled “Implementation of Import Restrictions; “Certification of Admissibility” for Certain Fish Products from Mexico¨ (83 FR 43796). A United States Court of International Trade (CIT) order (Slip-Op 18-92) imposed immediate import restrictions on fish and fish products of Mexican origin caught with gillnets deployed in the native geographic range of the critically endangered Vaquita porpoise, listed under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Under the August 14, 2018 court order, an import ban was placed on certain fish and fish products from Mexico (chano, sierra, curvina, and shrimp) that were caught with gillnets deployed in the Northern Gulf of California. To implement the court order, NOAA mandates that imports of shrimp, fish and fish products of Mexican origin that are entered under designated HTS codes must be accompanied by “Certification of Admissibility” signed by a duly authorized Official of the Mexican Government.

Beginning on October 15, 2018, National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) requirements for the import of all shrimp, fish and fish products of Mexican Origin must be accompanied with the “Certification of Admissibility” (OMB 0648-0651, expiration 04/30/2022) identifying the imported commodity was not harvested using gillnets in the Upper Gulf of California, Mexico. All “Certification of Admissibility” forms with an expiration date of 28 February 2019 will no longer be accepted and will cause an import of regulated commodities to be refused entry. The “Certification of Admissibility” must contain a valid signature from one of the thirty-three Officials Designated by the Government of Mexico list dated May 31, 2019, posted on the NOAA website (see link below). If a “Certification of Admissibility” is validated by an official who is not on the May 31, 2019 Designated Officials List, the shipment will be refused entry. The submission of the “Certification of Admissibility” may be done through electronic transfer into ACE DIS using DIS Code “NM23”, email, fax, or in paper to the CBP port of entry. All import of shrimp, fish and fish products from Mexico without a valid “Certification of Admissibility” or a valid disclaim (see below) will be refused entry.

Disclaim Process: Only processed commodities filed under HTS codes 2309.90 or 2309.10, or HTS code 0511.99.3060 may be exempt from the “Certification of Admissibility” requirement if a valid disclaim is submitted with the entry. A valid disclaim statement “the commodity under HTS (list the applicable HTS code) does not contain shrimp or fish products” must accompany the entry via ACE DIS, email, fax, or paper. All regulated commodities that do not fall under disclaim rules must provide the “Certification of Admissibility” to meet NMFS requirements or the entire entry is to be refused entry.

•Officials Designated by the Government of Mexico to Validate the U.S. Certification of Admissibility (Updated May 31, 2019): https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/foreign/marine-mammal-protection/seafood-import-restrictions

•For more information: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/foreign/marine-mammal-protection/seafood-import-restrictions

•Federal Register Notice 83 FR 43792: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2018/08/28/2018-18628/implementation-of-import-restrictions-certification-of-admissibility-for-certain-fish-products-from

•HTS codes prohibited entry into the United States from Mexico unless accompanied by a U.S. Importer of Record Certification: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/foreign/marine-mammal-protection/seafood-import-restrictions

•Certification of Admissibility and instructions may be found at: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/foreign/marine-mammal-protection/seafood-import-restrictions