DHS is working diligently to prevent the importation of forced labor-made goods from Xinjiang while facilitating lawful trade
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) continues its diligent enforcement of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) through U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and its leadership of the federal government’s Forced Labor Enforcement Task Force (FLETF). In the year since President Biden signed the UFLPA into law with overwhelming bipartisan support, DHS has spearheaded collaborations with non-governmental organizations (NGOs), industry, and federal partners to keep goods made with forced labor from the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) out of U.S. commerce, while facilitating the flow of legitimate trade. As of December 6, 2022, CBP has identified over 2,300 entries valued at nearly $740 million for further examination under the UFLPA, and held hundreds of meetings with importers to clarify the adjudication process.
“The use of forced labor is a heinous act and our Department will continue to devote its full energy to combat it,” said Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas. “The enforcement of the UFLPA is a moral imperative; we will continue to prevent goods produced by forced labor, particularly through the repression of ethnic minorities in China, from entering the United States. We will uphold our nation’s values, enforce our laws, and protect the integrity of lawful trade and the rights of the individual worker.”
“Forced labor is a scourge and DHS will continue to prevent goods made with forced labor from entering the United States, whether they come from the People’s Republic of China or any other part of the world,” said DHS Under Secretary for Policy and FLETF Chair Robert Silvers. “We are committed to eradicating forced labor from our supply chains. We are also committed to deepening our partnership with industry and civil society to further improve implementation of this new regime, ensuring that lawful commerce can proceed efficiently at the same time that we enforce our laws.”
“CBP is committed to eliminating forced labor from supply chains and shining a spotlight on global human rights,” said CBP Acting Commissioner Troy A. Miller. “This means goods directly from or connected to forced labor are prohibited from entering the United States unless the importer can demonstrate that its imports do not include any goods made from forced labor in any part of its supply chain.”
Following the publication on June 21, 2022 of the FLETF’s Strategy to Prevent the Importation of Goods Mined, Produced, or Manufactured with Forced Labor in the People’s Republic of China (UFLPA Strategy), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) began enforcement of the UFLPA’s presumption that goods sourced from the XUAR or an entity on the UFLPA Entity List are made with forced labor and therefore prohibited from entering the United States. Implementation of the UFLPA followed months of extensive engagement with members of the trade and civil society communities. Since then, the FLETF and CBP have continued to engage with industry and civil society through meetings, public forums, and roundtables. The FLETF is planning to continue this engagement by hosting its first biannual meeting with NGOs in January, which will be followed by the first biannual meeting with the private sector.
In the coming year, DHS will continue enhancing its UFLPA enforcement efforts, including by identifying additional entities that meet the criteria of the UFLPA Entity List, improving transparency and regular data sharing with the private sector and NGOs, and continuing to improve DHS’s ability to identify and prohibit imports made wholly or in part with forced labor in U.S. supply chains.