U.S. Levies $50 Billion In Tariffs On Chinese Products
President Trump announced on Friday that the U.S. would apply tariffs of 25 percent on $50 billion worth of products imported from China. The tariffs announced consist of two lists: the first, worth about $34 billion, goes into effect on July 6. The second list is going through a regulatory process, including a public comment period and hearing, and does not yet have an implementation date.
The U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) notes that the tariffs generally focus on products from industrial sectors that contribute to or benefit from the “Made in China 2025” industrial policy, including industries such as aerospace, information and communications technology, robotics, industrial machinery, new materials and automobiles. The list does not include goods commonly purchased by American consumers such as cell phones or televisions.
However, some of the items on the list will likely have some impact on manufacturers in the promotional products industry, as tariffs have been placed on items like LEDs and machinery for making rubber or plastic goods.
China has said that it would respond to the tariffs by levying a tariff of its own of 25 percent on $34 billion in U.S. imports to the country. It would go into effect on July 6, matching the timetable and amount enacted by the U.S. Products targeted by the Chinese include agricultural goods such as soybeans and pork, and automobiles. The president has said that he has asked the USTR to identify a further $200 billion in Chinese goods for potential tariffs as a response to the Chinese retaliation.
Paul Lage, MAS, president of IMAGEN Brands, told PPB Newslink earlier this year, “There is a ripple effect on all businesses when there are significant tariffs. As our suppliers and equipment providers are affected, then we may ultimately be affected with higher prices. There are many global companies that provide a lot of equipment that we use. As their world changes, it will likely be passed to suppliers, distributors and end users.”
The tariffs are part of a government effort to address concerns regarding a variety of China’s trade policies, such as market access barriers and technology transfer mandates. However, several members of the greater business community have expressed opposition to the federal government’s proposed response.
PPAI has worked actively to oppose the tariffs since their announcement earlier this year. Association staff attended committee hearings on the tariffs in Washington, D.C.; the tariffs were discussed with legislators and their staffs during the PPAI Legislative Education And Action Day (L.E.A.D.) last month; and PPAI has partnered with trade associations and companies representing a wide-ranging coalition of the American business community in an effort to inform the federal government about the dangers of imposing tariffs on items that are legitimately produced and traded.