The U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) is an independent, non-partisan, quasi-judicial federal agency of the United States that provides trade expertise to both the legislative and executive branches of government, determines the impact of imports on U.S. industries, and directs actions against certain unfair trade practices, such as patent, trademark, and copyright infringement.
The USITC was established by the U.S. Congress in 1916 as the U.S. Tariff Commission (the Trade Act of 1974 changed its name to the U.S. International Trade Commission), the agency has broad investigative powers on matters of trade. The USITC is a national resource where trade data is gathered and analyzed. This data is provided to the President and Congress as part of the information on which U.S. international trade policy is based.
In its own words, the mission of the Commission is to:
- administer U.S. trade remedy laws within its mandate in a fair and objective manner;
- provide the President, USTR, and Congress with independent, quality analysis, information, and support on matters of tariffs and international trade and competitiveness; and
- maintain the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States.
In so doing, the Commission serves the public by implementing U.S. law and contributing to the development and implementation of sound and informed U.S. trade policy.
The ITC's five operations include:
- Import Injury Investigations
- Intellectual Property-Based Import Investigations
- Research Program
- Trade Information Services
- Trade Policy Support
- Stephen Koplan (Chairman) (Democrat)
- Deanna Tanner Okun (Vice Chairman) (Republican)
- Jennifer A. Hillman (Democrat)
- Charlotte R. Lane (Republican)
- Daniel R. Pearson (Republican)
- Shara L. Aranoff (Democrat)
The USITC is not a court. However, its administrative law judges conduct trial-type official administrative hearings. If a 337 complaint has at least three votes from its six Commissioners, an official investigative hearing will be assigned to an administrative law judge.
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