Export Reporting for Agricultural Products

ID-79-38: Published: Jun 5, 1979. Publicly Released: Jul 6, 1979.

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A request was made for information on the number and types of firms currently reporting export sales to the Department of Agriculture (USDA). Inquiries with pertinent officials in the executive branch were initiated to determine the availability of the information. As currently operated, the USDA's export reporting system does not divide reporting exporters into categories such as the following: (1) American-based firms; (2) American firms with overseas affiliates; (3) foreign firms with American affiliates; and (4) foreign firms doing business exclusively overseas. Nor is information of this type available from other export data systems. While Export Sales Reporting regulations do not prohibit the Government from requiring exporters to provide additional information, USDA officials have consistently opposed modifying reporting regulations on the grounds that it would be of no useful purpose, and that requiring foreign owned and foreign based exporters to comply would be difficult. An accurate, more timely, and reliable reporting system is necessary and desireable. The quality of information provided by exporters could be materially improved if the USDA modified reporting requirements to include additional information on export sales such as the categories of firms listed above, classification of the foreign buyer, contract pricing terms or formulas, exact destinations, and contract provisions.

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