On May 5, 2016 – without warning – thousands of U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) contract holders received a notice asking them to verify the country of origin (COO) within one week for all products in their schedule contracts. This press release continues a trend towards strengthening congressional control and regulation of “Made in the USA” claims for products sold on the GSA schedule, as well as compliance with applicable laws, such as. B the Trade Agreements Act (TAA), 19 U.C. The TAA is the enabling status that implements many multilateral and bilateral trade agreements and other trade initiatives. Under the TAA, contractors must supply either finished products manufactured in the United States or U.S.-specific finished products. “Designated countries” are countries that have signed the agreement on the world trade organization`s procurement agreement for public procurement, a country in the free trade agreement and some countries in the development basin and the Caribbean.1 It is important that India, China, Malaysia and the Philippines are not designated countries. When a product or service has a COO that is not compatible with the AAT, it cannot be delivered in the context of purchases covered by the TAA without the delivery of a state waiver. The Trade Agreements Act (19 U.S.C. – 2501-2581) of 1979 was passed to promote fair and open international trade, but more importantly, it implemented the requirement that the U.S. government only buy finished manufactured products or certain finished products. This means, in particular, that, under a MAS program, GSA can only purchase products that are compliant in the United States and/or compliant with the TAA.

This requirement has always baffled many MAS contract holders as to their actual meaning. The Trade Agreements Act of 1979 (TAA), Pub.L. 96-39, 93 Stat. 144, adopted on July 26, 1979, codified on July 19. C ch. 13 (19 U.S.C. It outlined the modalities for the implementation of the Tokyo round of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade. (1) A World Trade Organization country (Armenia, Aruba, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea (Republic), Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan (known as “separate customs territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen) in the World Trade Organization]] (2) Free trade agreement (Australia, Bahrain, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Korea (Republic), Mexico, Morocco, Nicaragua, Oman, Panama, Peru; The GSA`s opinion requires any supplier of products listed on GSA Advantage to review its entire product offering and submit a table that verifies the COO for each product approved in the GSA contract.