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Changes to Trade Agreements Act Thresholds

Centre Law & Consulting


By Wayne Simpson, CFCM, CSCM

New Thresholds for 2018 and 2019

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) has determined and announced new U.S. Dollar Procurement Thresholds implementing U.S. Trade Agreement obligations, effective January 1, 2018, for calendar years 2018 and 2019.

The Trade Agreements Act of 1979 (TAA) implements international trade agreements and guarantees non-discriminatory treatment in government procurement.

TAA provides the President of the United States authority to waive the Buy American Act and other discriminatory provisions for countries having signed international trade agreements with the United States, and those meeting other criteria such as “Least Developed Countries.”  The President delegates waiver authority to the USTR.

The USTR waived the Buy American Act and other discriminatory provisions for acquisitions of eligible products covered by the World Trade Organization Government Procurement Agreement, Free Trade Agreement Acts, and the Israeli Trade Act.

Offerors of eligible products receive equal consideration with domestic offers.

Perhaps the most significant of the Trade Agreements is the World Trade Organization Government Procurement Agreement.  Free Trade Agreement Acts (FTA) include: The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Chile FTA, Singapore FTA, Australia FTA, Morocco FTA, Dominican Republic-Central American FTA, Bahrain FTA, Oman FTA, Peru FTA, Korea FTA, Columbia FTA, and the Panama FTA.

Other Trade Agreements include least developed countries designated by the USTR, The Caribbean Basin Trade Initiative, the Israeli Trade Agreement Act, and the Agreement on Trade in Civil Aircraft.

Specific thresholds for the respective Trade Agreements is found at Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 25.402.

Centre Law and Consulting offers webinars and classroom instruction for the Trade Agreements Act and other contract compliance and administration issues to assist your company.  Centre also offers a wide array of classes taught by attorneys and acquisition professionals to assist you in the Federal Marketplace.



About the Author:

WS.jpg Wayne Simpson
Wayne Simpson is retired from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) after 38 years of federal service. He served as the Executive Assistant to VA’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Acquisition and Logistics where he was the primary staff advisor to the Deputy Assistant Secretary, who serves concurrently as VA’s Senior Procurement Executive and Debarring Official.



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