Trade Alert

U.S. Customs Enforces CAATSA for North Korean Labor Usage

By In USA Trade Alerts On 26th January 2023

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced they began detaining merchandise produced or manufactured by Jingde Trading Ltd., Rixin Foods. Ltd., and Zhejiang Sunrise Garment Group Co. Ltd. at all U.S. ports of entry on Dec. 5, 2022.

This enforcement action is the result of a CBP investigation indicating that these companies use North Korean labor in their supply chains in violation of the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA).

What is CAATSA?

CAATSA prohibits the entry of goods, wares, and articles mined, produced, or manufactured wholly or in party by North Korean nationals or North Korean citizens anywhere in the world, unless clear and convincing evidence is provided that such goods were not made with convict labor, forced labor, or indentured labor under penal sanctions. 

What Happens if my Import is Subject to CAATSA?

Pursuant to CAATSA, CBP will detain merchandise from these entities at all U.S. ports of entry unless there is clear and convincing evidence that forced labor was not present at any stage of the production process. Evidence must be provided within 30 days of notice of detention. If the importer fails to provide clear and convincing evidence within this timeframe, the merchandise may be subject to seizure and forfeiture.

How to Report Parties in Violation of CAATSA?

Any person or organization that has reason to believe merchandise in violation of CAATSA, or any merchandise produced with forced labor, is or is likely to be imported into the United States can report detailed allegations by contacting CBP through the e-Allegations Online Trade Violations Reporting System or by calling 1-800-BE-ALERT.

More information on sanctions directed at North Korea may be found on and Questions on CBP’s enforcement actions and authorities under CAATSA may be directed to CBP at

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