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06 April 2018
On March 22 2018 President Trump signed a memorandum directing the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) to publish a proposed list of approximately 1,300 products of Chinese origin that would be subject to an additional 25% ad valorem tariff pursuant to Section 301 of the Trade Act 1974 (19 USC § 2411). This action was taken following findings by the USTR that China's discriminatory licensing requirements, foreign ownership restrictions, state-funded acquisitions and state-backed hacking operations amounted to IP theft totalling hundreds of billions of dollars (for further details please see "President Trump announces tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese imports").
On April 3 2018 the USTR published a proposed list of Chinese products that could be subject to the Section 301 tariff. As expected, the list of affected tariff numbers is heavily geared towards the technology sector, including the aerospace, information and communication technology, robotics and machinery industries.
Additional tariffs will be imposed on imports of products from China covering approximately 1,300 separate tariff lines. The products are defined at the Harmonised System (HTS) 8-digit level in the attached Annex.
Included are various products and parts classified in the following chapters:
The tariff applies only to goods of Chinese origin. The USTR is expected to publish further guidance on country of origin before the tariff becomes effective. However, pending further guidance, the origin of products will likely be determined according to US Customs and Border Protection rules of origin.
The Section 301 tariff will not become effective until after a notice and comment period, which will include a public hearing. The USTR's notice includes the following timeline:
Due to the significant potential impact these additional duties may have on a wide range of products from China, importers are urged to review their imports from China and, if they are importing any of the listed products, to consider, at a minimum, filing written comments and possibly appearing at the public hearing.
For further information on this topic please contact Teresa Polino or Leah Scarpelli at Arent Fox LLP by telephone (+1 202 857 6000) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com). The Arent Fox LLP website can be accessed at www.arentfox.com.
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