On August 29, it was announced that the U.S. Department of Justice is considering an investigation into Uber, the San Francisco-based technology company that has expanded its ride-sharing service abroad to more than 70 countries. Press reports indicate that DOJ may investigate potential violations by company personnel of the U.S. law against foreign bribery, known as the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). On the same day, the company confirmed the review and said that it was cooperating with the Justice Department on the matter. Continue Reading
In our blog shop, most of the news we scan is the nerdy minutia of regulatory nuance. But the other day, we found big news, a real scoop. The ITAR will be rewritten to remove guns and ammunition from its control.
Yes, you read that correctly, a plan has been proposed within the State Department to migrate the first three categories of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) to the control of the Export Administration Regulations within the coming year. Whether the State Department will go so far as to rename ITAR Part 121 the United States Munitions List (USML), the “United States List” remains to be seen. Continue Reading
On September 11, 2017, the UN Security Council unanimously imposed new sanctions on North Korea. The move came only days after Pyongyang launched an underground nuclear test that may have been the detonation of a hydrogen bomb. The American Ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, announced the new sanctions by declaring that “today, we are saying the world will never accept a nuclear armed North Korea.” Continue Reading
USCIS announced on September 5, 2017, that they are phasing in a rescission of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA). The DACA program began in 2012 and granted temporary status and work permits to the “dreamers” who came here as children without visas. Here’s a summary of how the new rules will impact your employees that have DACA status: Continue Reading
EU food safety authorities are still feeling the repercussions of the insecticide-contaminated eggs crisis. That crisis highlights the many challenges of dealing with unsafe and non-compliant products in a single European market, such as a lack of cooperation between EU authorities, traceability difficulties and widely varied national safety and testing standards. Continue Reading
On Monday, August 14, President Trump signed an executive memorandum directing U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to consider a “Section 301” investigation against China. Now, many of us have heard the phrase Section 301 investigation and, as we do when we are at a party where everyone is talking about that movie we haven’t seen, many of us just nod along. For those of our readers putting on the brave smile, we present bit of background here on the following:
- What Section 301 is;
- How an investigations and further trade actions may proceed; and
- What businesses should be most concerned.
On July 17, 2017, the U.S. State Department certified that Iran continues to meet the conditions of the Iran nuclear agreement known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA. As a result, for the next 90 days, the United States will maintain significant reductions in its sanctions against Iran as provided in the JCPOA. Among other things, those provisions allow non-U.S. companies to do business in Iran. The State Department’s action signals that for now, State believes that the JCPOA is the right U.S. policy toward Iran. Continue Reading
On July 27, 2017, the U.S. Congress sent to President Trump’s desk a bill that imposes new financial sanctions against Russia, Iran, and North Korea. It appears nearly certain that the president will sign that bill, now called the “Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act” (CAATSA). Edit: President Trump signed the bill on August 2, 2017. Continue Reading
How The EU Data Privacy Regulation Will Affect American Companies’ Data Collection and Processing Practices – and Their Revenue
For American companies who do business in Europe or who process the personal data of EU residents, the world of data privacy and security is about to get much more complicated. While U.S. privacy law is unsettled, with rapidly proliferating state and federal laws and regulations and uncertainty as to how strictly they will be enforced, the rules in the European Union are tough and about to get much tougher. The General Data Protection Regulation (EU) 2016/679 (GDPR), slated to take effect in May 2018, will give consumers in the EU substantially more control over how their personal data is used. The increased control includes the right to:
- access any personal data that has been collected,
- obtain confirmation about whether an individual’s data is being processed, and
- require that the data be “erased” if the consumer withdraws consent.
On June 19, Commerce Secretary Ross mentioned at a Wall Street Journal CFO dinner that the Administration is now considering launching an investigation of semiconductor imports under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962. Ross said the specific concern is the threat of China to surpass U.S. semiconductor production. Continue Reading