USCIB Welcomes New Vice President for Labor Affairs and Corporate Responsibility

Gabriella Rigg Herzog
Gabriella Rigg Herzog

USCIB welcomed Gabriella Rigg Herzog as its new Vice President for Labor Affairs and Corporate Responsibility yesterday, April 17. Herzog will be based in USCIB’s New York office.

Most recently, Herzog served as Senior Manager for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) at Hess Corporation and actively participated in the USCIB Corporate Responsibility Committee.  She worked with her predecessors Adam Greene and Ariel Meyerstein and knows many of the company representatives on the committee including the Chair, Laura Rubbo.  At Hess she handled CSR and human rights issues and was active in a wide-range of internal and outside activities that led to Hess being recognized as one of the 100 Best Corporate Citizens.

Prior to her work with Hess, Herzog was a Policy Advisor at the U.S. Department of State in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, where she led the Bureau’s global CSR policy and program practice.  She also worked at the U.S. Department of Labor developing and implementing labor cooperation programs to help labor ministries improve enforcement capacity.

“We are excited to have Gabriella join the USCIB team and fortunate to be able to bring in someone who has worked with us in her previous roles,” said Rob Mulligan, Senior Vice President for Policy and Government Affairs. “She brings a strong background in CSR and Labor issues to the role at USCIB with the added advantage of already being very familiar with the work of the committees she will manage.”

USCIB Welcomes Michael Michener as Vice President of Product Policy and Innovation

New York, N.Y., February 21, 2017 – The United States Council for International Business (USCIB) announced that Michael Michener, a former administrator of the U.S. Foreign Agricultural Service who has also served as a U.S. trade diplomat and association executive, has joined USCIB’s staff as vice president of product policy and innovation.

Working out of USCIB’s Washington, D.C. office, Michener will lead the organization’s policy work on chemicals, health, food, agriculture and intellectual property. He will also coordinate USCIB’s engagement in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum.

“Mike brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to USCIB, especially his background in working with international organizations, that will contribute greatly to our efforts on behalf of members,” said Rob Mulligan, USCIB’s senior vice president for policy and government relations. “We are excited to have him join our team at a time when the policy and regulatory challenges facing American companies are complex and growing.”

Michener most recently served in Brussels as director of multilateral relations for CropLife International, representing the association before a range of international organizations – including the UN Food and Agricultural Organization, the UN Environment Program and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change – on issues related to crop protection products and agriculture biotechnology.

Previously Michener served with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in two different roles. First, as administrator of the Foreign Agricultural Service, he managed 1,100 employees and an annual operating budget of $300 million.  Then, as minister counselor at the U.S. Mission to the UN Agencies in Rome, he served as the special representative of the U.S. secretary of agriculture to UN bodies dealing with food and agricultural issues.

Michener has also worked with the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and U.S. Agency for International Development, and he served with the United States Army for seven years in Europe. Michener earned a master’s degree in public administration from Bowie State University and a bachelor’s degree East European studies from the University of Maryland.

About USCIB:

USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence.  Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world.

With a unique global network encompassing the International Chamber of Commerce, the International Organization of Employers and the Business and Industry Advisory Committee to the OECD, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More at www.uscib.org.

US Unlikely to Sign New Global Tax Treaty

Businessman hand touching tax word on virtual screen the concept of online taxation.

USCIB’s vice president for taxation policy, Carol Doran Klein, was quoted extensively in a November 30 Bloomberg BNA article on the OECD’s multilateral tax treaty, known as the Multilateral Convention to Implement Tax Treaty-Related Measures to Prevent Base Erosion and Profit Shifting. According to Doran Klein, while many countries are likely to sign on to parts of the treaty, it is unlikely the U.S. will sign on mainly because the multilateral instrument (MLI) “does not have a lot to offer the U.S. Many of the provisions are variations on treaty policies that the U.S. has been implementing for decades.”

Regarding effect on business, Doran Klein said it will be a challenge for companies and their advisers to analyze the changes made by the MLI to individual bilateral treaties. “This is actually a huge issue, because it may be difficult to work through exactly what the new treaty language is.” Doran Klein said she is worried that the tax treaty area will wind up like the trade area. The trade agreements are very difficult to read and understand, because they refer back to other agreements for basic principles. “I believe that the reason they do that is they do not want to open up the fundamentals of the old agreements to complete renegotiation, but it is therefore extremely difficult to understand the obligations.”

To read the full story, visit Bloomberg BNA (subscription required).

USCIB Welcomes New Staff Members

USCIB welcomes Mia Lauter, who joined USCIB’s Policy Department in New York to work on Environment, Climate Change, Product Policy and Innovation issue areas. She joins another recent hire, Elizabeth Kim, who joined earlier this year to focus on Corporate Responsibility, Labor, APEC, Competition and China.

Additionally, Kira Yevtukhova has succeeded Chris Zoia as Communications Manager after working in USCIB’s Policy Department for over five years. She will be based in USCIB’s Washington office. Chris has taken a new position with the Freedom Fund.

Please join us in welcoming and congratulating Mia, Elizabeth and Kira.

The Uncertain U.S. Role in Global Tax Debate

BEPS TaxationUSCIB’s vice president for tax, Carol Doran Klein, has recently been quoted in Bloomberg Government amid uncertainty around the U.S. role in global tax rewrite under President-elect Trump’s administration. Among the various issues, the project on tax base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) will likely not unravel. Doran Klein trusts that the BEPS project will be included in the new administration’s ongoing work, hoping that the U.S. will “continue to participate actively because having the U.S. Treasury at the table makes the rules more likely to reflect the concerns of the U.S. as a government and the U.S. business community.” She goes on to say that there are “many countries that are getting significant benefits from the BEPS project, including things that have already been implemented, such as the reporting requirements.”

Read the whole story here. Please note you need a subscription to Bloomberg Government for full access.

USCIB’s Medina Leads Discussion at ChemCon 2016

USCIB Vice President Helen Media
USCIB Vice President Helen Medina

Facing increasing demands around the world to divulge details of their supply chains and production processes, how much information can (and should) companies share regarding the chemicals used in their products?

USCIB Vice President Helen Medina led a discussion of this topic at this week’s ChemCon Americas 2016 conference in Toronto. Chairing a panel on “Global Supply Chain Transparency & Stakeholders,” Medina noted the numerous efforts by governments and international bodies to promote greater disclosure by companies.

“There is increased societal pressure for the ‘right to know’ concept,” Medina stated. “What’s more, companies are facing market and stakeholder pressure to ‘green’ their supply chains as a way to improve their corporate citizenship profile.”

Others speaking on Medina’s panel included Mark Herwig (GE), Sophia Danenberg (Boeing), Wendy Brant (Walmart) and Scott Echols (ZDHC Foundation).

Medina said that policy makers in many countries and regions are expanding their concept of risk in chemicals, to encompass not just the materials in a given product but also how they are used. In addition, they are increasingly requiring information to understand chemical risks throughout a products entire life cycle.

Highlighting numerous inter-governmental efforts to promote transparency on chemicals use, Medina cited the UN Sustainable Development Goals, where Goal 12 sets out to “achieve the environmentally sound management of chemicals and all wastes throughout their life cycle, in accordance with agreed international frameworks, and significantly reduce their release to air, water and soil in order to minimize their adverse impacts on human health and the environment.”

This focus has migrated into various other discussions in the UN system and elsewhere, Media said. She urged companies of all sizes to pay greater attention to these discussions, which she said would influence national laws and rule-making on chemicals for years to come.

2016 International Leadership Award Dinner

The International Leadership Award
The International
Leadership Award

Due to some unanticipated scheduling circumstances, we are postponing the USCIB International Leadership Award Dinner, which had been scheduled for November 9. We will inform you of the new date, which at this point is anticipated to be early Spring, just as soon as it is set, and we hope this change in timing will not affect your participation. Thank you for understanding and for your continued support.

USCIB is delighted to invite you to join us at the 2016 International Leadership Award Dinner in New York honoring Ajay Singh Banga, president and chief executive officer of MasterCard. Each year this gala event attracts several hundred industry leaders, government officials and members of the diplomatic community to celebrate open markets and the recipient of USCIB’s highest honor.

Established in 1980, USCIB’s International Leadership Award is presented to a senior business executive who has made significant policy contributions to world trade and investment, and to improving the global competitive framework in which American business operates. Join us for what will be a truly memorable evening!

For details on sponsorship opportunities, contact Abby Shapiro (ashapiro@uscib.org, 212-703-5064).

Visit this page for links to event photos and other information on our 2015 award gala!

Finance Disrupted – Collaborate or Die?

Finance Disrupted BannerUSCIB is proud to partner with The Economist for the October 13 event “Finance Disrupted: Collaborate or Die?” in New York City. The wave of fintech disruption that is sweeping through the financial services industry is approaching a critical phase. The rise of startups targeting every corner of financial services – from currency transactions to trading and wealth management – has won the attention of the industry’s incumbent giants.

USCIB members save 15% on The Economist’s “Finance Disrupted” conference

Building on 2015’s acclaimed Buttonwood Gathering, “The Valley Meets the Street”, we are pleased to announce that our Finance Disrupted conference will take place this October 13th 2016 at 10 on the Park at the Time Warner Center in New York. Join editors of The Economist, industry leaders, entrepreneurs, investors, academics and policymakers to explore the role of collaboration in surviving the fintech revolution.

Visit The Economist’s website for program and registration information.

Making a Difference: USCIB Annual Report 2015 – 2016

Annual_Report_2015-2016Around the world, and across every industry, companies are facing increased regulation of their operations. New corporate tax rules, heightened privacy protections, environmental reporting, forced localization – these are just a few examples of the proliferating regulatory burden with which global companies must contend. The cost of regulation is increasing, eating into profits and hampering job creation.

In addressing regulation of cross-border commerce, one important avenue is to work with intergovernmental institutions – such as the United Nations, World Trade Organization and the OECD – that help set the global rules of the road and recommend best practices to governments. This is at the heart of what USCIB does. And we do so both offensively, providing proactive education and informed views to policymakers at the national and international level, to ensure better, more sensible polices, and defensively, helping companies mitigate the costs of rules and regulations.

Find out more about our work and how we can help your company in our Annual Report.

USCIB Statement on Impact of Brexit Vote on ATA Carnet

Last week’s UK vote to leave the European Union has spurred many questions regarding the country’s future trade and treaty commitments, including the ATA Carnet system for temporary imports. At this time, the UK remains a member of the EU, and the process for leaving the bloc has not yet begun. We have no indication of any changes affecting the use of ATA Carnets in the UK, or in the EU as a whole, for the foreseeable future.

The earliest Brexit could take effect is two years after a treaty mechanism has been triggered. The latter part of 2018 is considered the most likely date at the moment.

“In the meantime members of the chain can continue to issue ATA Carnets for the UK as part of the EU in exactly the same way as they do now.  The UK will continue issuing exactly as present as well.” said Peter Bishop, deputy chief executive of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

As the U.S. National Guaranteeing Association for the global ATA Carnet system, USCIB is monitoring the situation closely, working with ICC and affected parties including our ATA Carnet Service Providers. We will provide updates as new information becomes available.