ISRI testifies before US International Trade Commission

Oct. 14 testimony focused on the support of recycled commodities and recycling equipment as environmental goods.

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October 19, 2015

The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), Washington, has announced it testified before the U.S. International Trade Commission Oct. 14, 2015. The purpose of the testimony, presented by ISRI Chief Economist Joe Pickard, was to support recognition of recycled commodities and recycling equipment as environmental goods and to inform the commission of the benefits of tariff reduction, according to an ISRI news release.

Pickard’s testimony as prepared follows:

“I am extremely honored and pleased to represent ISRI and appear today before the U.S. International Trade Commission in support of the commission’s investigation into the probable economic effects of providing duty-free treatment for a second list of articles under the WTO’s (World Trade Organization’s) environmental goods trade negotiations.

"The EGA (Environmental Goods Agreement) negotiations by their very nature recognize the need to promote the trade of environmental goods due in part to society’s move towards sustainable development and improved environmental stewardship. Recycling has been and continues to be a main pillar of that movement and ISRI is extremely pleased at the heightened awareness among the negotiators that recycled commodities and equipment are indeed environmental goods.

"ISRI fully supports the EGA negotiations and the inclusion of the full range of recycled commodities and scrap recycling equipment as environmental goods during these and future trade negotiations.

"Currently, U.S. companies face a range of overseas import tariffs on exports of U.S. recycled goods and recycling equipment. At the same time, there are no (zero) general duties imposed by the United States on imports of recycled goods such as recovered paper and fiber, ferrous and nonferrous scrap or plastic scrap. The elimination of tariff barriers on U.S. recycling industry exports would not only promote trade and result in significant environmental benefits, it would also promote U.S. economic growth, create jobs, raise income and generate additional tax revenue.

"As such, ISRI is committed to assisting the USITC (U.S. International Trade Commission) throughout its investigation and would welcome the opportunity to provide additional input on the benefits associated with the inclusion of harmonized trade codes covering the full range of recycled commodities and recycling equipment."