FEMA Detaining Export Shipments of Scarce or Threatened Materials

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The U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced they will issue a temporary rule to prevent the export of certain scarce or threatened materials from the U.S. The rule is meant to allocate these materials for domestic use, and you must secure explicit approval from FEMA to export them.

The Federal Register notice scheduled for April 10 indicates the rule will cover five types of personal protective equipment (PPE):

  • N95 Filtering Facepiece Respirators, including devices that are disposable half-face-piece non-powered air-purifying particulate respirators intended for use to cover the nose and mouth of the wearer to help reduce wearer exposure to pathogenic biological airborne particulates
  • Other Filtering Facepiece Respirators (e.g., those designated as N99, N100, R95, R99, R100, or P95, P99, P100), including single-use, disposable half-mask respiratory protective devices that cover the user’s airway (nose and mouth) and offer protection from particulate materials at an N95 filtration efficiency level per 42 CFR 84.181
  • Elastomeric, air-purifying respirators and appropriate particulate filters/cartridges
  • PPE surgical masks, including masks that cover the user’s nose and mouth and provide a physical barrier to fluids and particulate material
  • PPE gloves or surgical gloves, including those defined at 21 CFR 880.6250 (exam gloves) and 878.4460 (surgical gloves) and such gloves intended for the same purposes

The FEMA Administrator may, at any point, determine additional materials subject to this allocation order. The above list is subject to change.

Under this temporary rule, before any shipments of covered materials can be exported from the U.S., Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will detain the shipment temporarily, during which time FEMA will determine whether to return for domestic use, issue a rated order for, or allow the export of part or all of the shipment. FEMA will work to make these determinations within a reasonable time of being notified, and will make decisions based on the following factors:

  1. the need to ensure that scarce or threatened items are appropriately allocated for domestic use;
  2. minimization of disruption to the supply chain, both domestically and abroad;
  3. the circumstances surrounding the distribution of the materials and potential hoarding or price-gouging concerns;
  4. the quantity and quality of the materials;
  5. humanitarian considerations; and
  6. international relations and diplomatic consideration.

The rule is effective immediately upon publication until August 8, 2020 (120 days after publication).

You can view the full notice on the Federal Register here.

Trans-Border will continue to monitor the situation and keep you informed of any new developments. If you have any questions, please reach out to Yateen Patel, Director of Export Compliance, at ypatel@tbgfs.com or (800) 493-9444.

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