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23 August 2019
On 1 August 2019 President Trump posted a tweet stating that, beginning on 1 September 2019, importers can expect a 10% tariff on $300 billion of Chinese goods.
This new tariff would be separate from the already existing 25% tariff on $250 billion of imports from China (for further details see "Section 301 update: List 3 increases to 25%, a possible exclusion process and a new List 4?")
This announcement follows the statements made during the G20 Summit in Japan on 29 June 2019, where Trump shared that he would not impose tariffs on Section 301 List 4 goods "for at least the time being".
The Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) has yet to issue specific coverage for this new 10% tariff. However, importers should expect to see the goods subject to it on the proposed Section 301 List 4. The USTR has indicated that a List 4 exclusion request process could come on the heels of the current List 3 exclusion request timetable, which ends on 30 September 2019 (for further details see "July update on China Section 301 tariffs: latest from China-US talks").
The exact products that will be on List 4 is unclear, but could include basic consumer merchandise (eg, toys, electronic devices and apparel) as proposed on 17 May 2019. The USTR plans to publish a Federal Register notice listing the products that will be subject to the 10% tariff. A USTR spokesperson told the press that the list may reflect revisions based on public comments and testimony at the June 2019 hearing.
While the president said the tariffs will come into effect on 1 September 2019, it is unclear whether they will be assessed based on the date of import into the United States or the date of export from China. Administration officials say that the USTR will announce this policy decision. In the past, the president has announced cease fires on tariffs as part of an agreement to continue negotiations for a bilateral trade agreement, so he could still suspend the tariffs before the 1 September deadline.
For further information on this topic please contact David R Hamill, Teresa Polino, David Salkeld or De'Siree N Reeves at Arent Fox LLP by telephone (+1 202 857 6000) or email (email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org). The Arent Fox LLP website can be accessed at www.arentfox.com.
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