The new round of tariffs announced by President Trump last week is expected to affect nearly all of the $540 billion in goods currently imported from China. Consumer products that had been spared in previous rounds — including smartphones, apparel, toys and video games — will now be subject to tariffs, beginning September 1.
What should importers know?
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative is expected to release a final list of affected goods before the September 1 deadline. The preliminary list was published in the Federal Register on May 17. Click HERE to view.
Note that some items on that preliminary list will likely have been removed, as ongoing hearings on the additional duties held since the publication are enabling businesses to comment and seek exclusions.
Regardless, the new tariffs are aimed squarely at the items most likely to cause consumers pain, such as footwear, clothing, toys and popular electronics such as Apple’s product line.
What can importers do?
If the tariffs do take effect on Sept. 1, companies will have an opportunity to file for exclusions. Those seeking waivers in previous instances have had to explain why the tariffs would cause them “severe economic harm,” why the products are unavailable outside China and whether the item was “strategically important” to China’s industrial policy.
Although recent trade talks with China appear to have been unproductive, the situation remains very fluid. WB Skinner is advising our clients to do the following:
- Know whether your imports are affected and decide what you’re going to do about it.
- Consider sourcing options in other countries besides China.
- If you have a question about whether your products are affected by the tariffs, we may be able to help. We can tell you what impact the tariffs will have on your shipments, and help you file an exemption.