NEWS Alert

USTR Publishes “Exclusion” Procedures for Products Affected by the U.S. Tariffs on China

In a notice published on July 6, 2018, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) outlined a way for U.S. stakeholders to get products excluded from the recent imposition of an additional ad valorem duty of 25 percent on Chinese products imported under 818 tariff lines, covering a trade value of approximately $34 billion in 2018.

The recent tariff action, undertaken pursuant to USTR’s Section 301 investigation, is in response to China’s unfair trade practices related to the forced transfer of U.S. technology and intellectual property.

Companies, trade associations, and other interested parties seeking product exclusion from the tariffs on Chinese goods imported into the U.S. will get 90 days to file such request, or until October 9, 2018. Once a request is filed and posted on www.regulations.gov, public responses will be collected for 14 days, with an additional seven days allowed for requestor’s responses. If an exclusion is granted, it will be retroactive and effective as of July 6, 2018 and valid for one year from the date the exclusion approval is published int eh Federal Register.

In making the determination on each request, USTR will consider whether a product is available from a source outside of China, whether additional duties would cause severe economic harm to the requestor or other U.S. interests, and whether the particular product is strategically important or related o Chinese industrial programs including “Made in China 2025.”

Approvals are product-specific, not company-specific. Therefore, particular exclusion will apply to all imports of the product, regardless of whether the importer filed a request. The USTR has not announced a timeline for how long it will take it to review and process exclusion requests.

The Wicks Group attorneys have assisted numerous clients with their international trade needs, including import-export control and sanctions. Companies or trade association impacted by the Section 301 duties, and considering filing a product exclusion petition, could contact Ronce Almond or Marina O’Brien at (202) 457-7790 or via email at ralmond@wicks-group.com and mvobrien@wicks-group.com.

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