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Tariff Exclusion Procedure Deadline for Chinese Goods

The U.S. Trade Representative is inviting individuals and companies affected by the proposed Chinese tariffs to request an exclusion, request an appearance at the public hearing, and/or submit a comment.

Initial Tariffs and Exclusion Request Deadline

On August 18, 2017, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) commenced an investigation into certain acts, policies, and practices of the Chinese government regarding its trade practices—finding China's trade practices discriminatory and unreasonable. On June 20, 2018, the USTR issued a notice that an additional 25 percent ad valorem duty on products from China with an annual trade value of $34 billion would go into effect on July 6, 2018. The USTR issued another proposed action for an additional ad valorem duty of 25 percent on products of China with an annual trade value of $16 billion.

In regards to the tariffs that went into effect on July 6, 2018, the USTR is currently accepting requests for exclusions of particular product(s). Given the 25 percent increase in tariffs, a successful exclusion of an effected product will likely result in significant savings. The deadline to submit a request for exclusion expires on October 9, 2018. However, based on conversations with the USTR, exclusions are being considered on a rolling basis—therefore prompt submissions are strongly recommended.

China's Response, Additional Tariffs, and Hearing Requests and Comment Deadlines

The Chinese government responded to the initial U.S. tariffs by imposing a 25 percent retaliatory tariff on U.S. goods with an annual trade value of $50 billion. In response and in addition to the initial $34 billion and $16 billion action, USTR proposes a further 10 percent ad valorem duty on products of China with an annual trade value of approximately $200 billion. Most recently, China threatened to impose taxes on an additional $60 billion of imports annually, which would subject a total of two-fifths of U.S. products to China to tariffs. President Trump has requested that the USTR evaluate moving the tariff level from 10 percent to 25 percent on the approximately 200 billion in light of the Chinese tariff response.

USTR is currently accepting requests to appear at the upcoming public hearing and/or submit a comment with respect to the new proposed Chinese tariffs. Appearing at the public hearing and/or submitting a comment provides interested individuals and/or companies with an opportunity to address the economic impact of the tariffs on the company. Once again, given the proposed tariff increases and the potential for another increase, comments on the impact of the tariffs and/or a successful removal of an item(s) will be helpful to achieve significant cost savings.

The deadline to submit a request to appear at the public hearing has been extended from July 27 to August 13, 2018. The deadline to submit a written comment has been extended from August 17 to September 5, 2018. The current scheduled start date of the Section 301 hearing is 9:30 am on August 20, 2018 at the U.S. International Trade Commission in Washington D.C.

© 2020 Varnum LLPNational Law Review, Volume VIII, Number 218


About this Author

Dennis M. Devaney, labor and employment lawyer, Varnum

For more than 30 years, Dennis has represented clients in labor and employment disputes, on international trade issues, in litigation and on legislative and regulatory matters. His labor and employment practice focuses on traditional labor law, including representation of clients with respect to matters arising under the National Labor Relations Act. He also represents employers in defense of discrimination claims and with respect to collective bargaining agreement negotiation and administration. He acts as trial counsel in arbitration hearings for his clients throughout...

Timothy Eagle, Litigation lawyer, Varnum

Tim focuses his practice in media law, advertising law, intellectual property, e-commerce, litigation (including commercial/business) and international law. Tim’s litigation practice also includes defense of law enforcement personnel, civil rights litigation, constitutional litigation, death in custody and use of force litigation, and condition of confinement litigation in trial and appellate courts.

Tim’s media law practice includes representation of broadcast entities, publishers, and reporters in matters relating to newsgathering, courtroom access, defamation and litigation. His practice also includes advertising clearance advice, sweepstakes/promotions advice and false advertising class action defense. Tim’s international law practice includes representing foreign entities from diverse locations in litigation in United States courts and before United States tribunals. He also advises clients on international law issues such as European Union privacy standards.

Tim is a frequent speaker on issues such as e-commerce, trademarks, copyrights and litigation.

Eric R. Post, Retail Manufacturing Lawyer, Varnum, Corporate & business attorney

Eric is a business and corporate attorney who advises startups, private and family-owned businesses, and multinational companies in the automotive, manufacturing, technology, retail and health care industries. His practice is focused on domestic and international mergers, stock and asset acquisitions, joint ventures, business entity formation, export and import compliance, international trade and a wide variety of general business matters, including commercial contracts, regulatory compliance, strategic and operational issues, and general corporate governance. Eric also advises his...

Dena H. Shuayto, Varnum Law Firm, Detroit, Litigation Law Attorney

Dena is a member of Varnum's Litigation and Trial Services Practice Team, handling an array of cases ranging from product liability to complex commercial disputes. Dena also works heavily with Varnum's Labor and Employment Practice Team, working on claims including discrimination, wrongful discharge and breach of contract matters.