7 CFR 17.4 - Agents of the participant or importer.

§ 17.4 Agents of the participant or importer.
(a) General. (1) A participant or importer is not required to use a purchasing agent or shipping agent, or employ the services of any other agent, broker, consultant, or other representative (hereafter “agent”) in connection with arranging the purchase of agricultural commodities under title I of the Act and arranging ocean transportation for such commodities. However, if an agent is used, the participant shall submit a written nomination of the agent to the Deputy Administrator, Export Credits, FAS, along with a copy of the proposed agreement between the participant or importer and such agent. The written nomination shall also specify the period of time to be covered by the nomination. A person may not act as agent for a participant or importer unless the Deputy Administrator, Export Credits, FAS, has provided a written statement that the nomination is accepted in accordance with the provisions of this section.
(2) See § 17.6(c) regarding commissions, fees, or other compensation of any kind to agents of a participant or importer.
(3) A freight agent employed by the Agency for International Development under titles II and III is not eligible to act as an agent for the participant or importer during the period of such employment. A subcontractor of such freight agent is not eligible to act as an agent for the participant or importer during the period of its subcontract.
(b) Affiliate defined. For purposes of this section, the term affiliate has the meaning provided in § 17.2 and, in addition, persons will also be considered to be affiliates if any of the following conditions are met:
(1) There are any common officers or directors.
(2) There is any investment by eligible commodity suppliers, selling agents, or persons engaged in furnishing ocean transportation or ocean transportation-related services for commodities provided under any title of the Act, section 416(b) of the Agricultural Act of 1949, or the Food for Progress Act of 1985, whether or not any part of the ocean transportation is financed by the U.S. Government, or by agents of such persons, or their officers or directors, in the agent of the participant or importer.
(3) There is any investment by the agent of the participant or importer, or its officers or directors, in approved commodity suppliers; selling agents; or persons engaged in furnishing ocean transportation or ocean transportation-related services for commodities provided under any title of the Act, section 416(b) of the Agricultural Act of 1949, or the Food for Progress Act of 1985, whether or not any part of the ocean transportation is financed by the U.S. Government, or in agents of such persons. These conditions include those cases in which investment has been concealed by the utilization of any scheme or device to circumvent the purposes of this section but does not include investment in any mutual fund.
(c) Information to be furnished. A person nominated to act as an agent of the participant or importer, and any independent contractor that may be hired by such person to perform functions of a shipping agent, shall furnish to the Deputy Administrator, Export Credits, FAS, the following information or documentation as may be applicable:
(1) The names of all incorporators;
(2) The names and titles of all officers and directors;
(3) The names of all affiliates, including the names and titles of all officers and directors of each affiliate, and a description of the type of business in which the affiliate is engaged;
(4) The names and proportionate share interest of all stockholders;
(5) If beneficial interest in stock is held by other than the named shareholders, the names of the holders of the beneficial interest and the proportionate share of each;
(6) The amount of the subscribed capital;
(7) For USDA acceptance of a nomination covering services provided during each U.S. fiscal year (October 1-September 30), a written statement signed by such person:
(i) Certifying that, during the U.S. fiscal year covered by USDA's acceptance of the nomination, the person has not engaged in, and will not engage in, supplying commodities under any title of the Act or the Food for Progress Act of 1985 or furnishing ocean transportation or ocean transportation-related services for commodities provided under any title of the Act, section 416(b) of the Agricultural Act of 1949, or the Food for Progress Act of 1985, whether any part of the ocean transportation is financed by the U.S. Government; and that the person has not served and will not serve as an agent of firms engaged in providing such commodities, ocean transportation and ocean transportation-related services;
(ii) Certifying that, for ocean transportation brokerage services provided during the U.S. fiscal year covered by USDA's acceptance of the nomination, the person has not shared and will not share freight commissions with the participant, the importer, or any agent of the participant or the importer, whether CCC finances any part of the ocean freight. CCC will consider as sharing a commission a situation where the agent forgoes part or all of a commission and the supplier of ocean transportation pays a commission directly to the participant, the importer, or any other person on behalf of the participant or the importer; and
(iii) Undertaking that, during the U.S. fiscal year covered by USDA's acceptance of the nomination, affiliates of such person have not engaged in and will not engage in the activities or actions prohibited in this paragraph (c)(7).
(8) A certification that neither the person nor any affiliates has arranged to give or receive any payment, kickback, or illegal benefit in connection with the person's selection as agent of the participant or importer.
(d) USDA acceptance. (1) USDA will consider accepting the nomination of a person to act as an agent of the participant or importer when the documents required to be submitted by this section are received by the Deputy Administrator, Export Credits, FAS.
(2) USDA's acceptance of such nomination shall remain in effect for the period of time requested by the participant or such shorter period as the Deputy Administrator, Export Credits, FAS, may determine. USDA will withdraw such acceptance if the agent of the participant or importer, or any of the affiliates of such agent, violates the certifications or undertakings made pursuant to paragraphs (c) (7) and (8) of this section.
(3) A person is required to submit the information and documentation required by § 17.4(c) to support the person's first nomination to act as an agent of any participant or importer for each fiscal year. For subsequent nominations covering the same fiscal year, the person must provide a written certification that the information and documentation provided earlier are still accurate and complete, or must provide the details of any changes to previously submitted information.
(e) Notification. The Deputy Administrator, Export Credits, FAS, shall promptly notify persons nominated as agents of the participant or importer, of the determination or of the need for further inquiry, and shall provide a written response within 30 calendar days of receipt of all the required documents. If USDA will not accept the nomination, the notification shall state the reasons therefor. The determination of the Deputy Administrator, Export Credits, FAS, is effective immediately and continues in effect pending the result of any appeal to the General Sales Manager.
(f) Non-acceptance or withdrawal. (1) If USDA does not accept the nomination of a person, or if acceptance has been withdrawn pursuant to the provisions of this section, the person may, within 30 calendar days, present to the General Sales Manager, orally or in writing, any reasons as to why such action should not stand. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed as to prohibit a person whose nomination has not been accepted or whose acceptance has been withdrawn by USDA from being nominated at a later time.
(2) If, in the procurement of commodities made available under title I, Pub. L. 480, a participant or importer uses an agent whose nomination has not been accepted in writing by the Deputy Administrator, Export Credits, FAS, USDA may withhold sales approval.
(3) If, in the shipping of commodities made available under title I, Pub. L. 480, a participant or importer uses an agent whose nomination has not been accepted in writing by the Deputy Administrator, Export Credits, FAS, USDA may withhold vessel approval or may deduct from the ocean freight differential to be paid, the amount of any commission to the agent in connection with the shipment.
(g) No competitive advantage. A shipping agent may not take any action which would give a competitive advantage to any supplier of commodities or ocean transportation. This includes, but is not limited to, providing advance notice of IFB's or amendments, or selectively enforcing IFB or contract requirements.
[62 FR 52932, Oct. 10, 1997; 62 FR 63606, Dec. 1, 1997]

Title 7 published on 2014-01-01

no entries appear in the Federal Register after this date.