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On May 16, 2024, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the addition of 26 textile companies based in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) Entity List. Goods produced by these textile companies will be restricted from entering the United States by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The new textile companies added to the Entity List are cotton manufacturers based outside of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) that source cotton from the XUAR and are in addition to companies already on the Entity List.

The Forced Labor Enforcement Task Force (FLETF), chaired by DHS, states that their objective in taking these steps is as part of the United States’ commitment to eliminate the use of forced labor in the U.S. supply chain.

Since the UFLPA was signed into law in December 2021, the FLETF has added 65 entities to the UFLPA Entity List. These entities reach into the apparel, agriculture, polysilicon, plastics, chemicals, batteries, household appliances, electronics and food additives sectors, among others. The interagency FLETF – which also includes the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative and the U.S. Departments of Commerce, Justice, Labor, State and the Treasury – voted to add the 26 companies to the UFLPA Entity List. The May 16, 2024, announcement represents the largest ever one-time expansion to the UFLPA Entity List according to the FLETF.

Our Recommendation to Clients

The CBP may prevent shipments that it suspects were made with the use of forced labor from entering the United States. Although importing companies may wait until the CBP stops an incoming shipment, this will often result in significant delays and potential liabilities as the importer scrambles to obtain the information necessary to persuade CBP to release the shipment. If the importer is unable to persuade the CBP, the goods may not enter the United States.

As a practical matter, companies buying cotton and textiles containing cotton from China should at the time of placing an order gather information from their suppliers documenting that the source of all cotton within the products being imported is not from a Chinese manufacturer on the Entities List and does not otherwise come from Xinjiang. The CBP has prepared detailed guidance on its recommendations for the type of documentation that it typically requests. We have worked with clients to set up compliance documentation programs to ensure that their imports fully comply with the UFLPA and will not be unduly delayed by the CBP at the border.


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