Trade Compliance Flash: USTR Seeks Comments on China Tariffs
As previously reported, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) is requesting public comments on whether to continue, terminate, or expand the tariffs on China-origin products imposed pursuant to Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974. To that end, USTR published a list of questions intended to guide interested parties on the type of information it's seeking. Companies affected by the Section 301 tariffs should consider responding to these questions because it may be the only remaining opportunity to formally provide comments to USTR on the tariffs.
The questions are divided into three sections. Interested parties can choose to respond to questions in one, two, or all three sections.
- Section A: Impact on the U.S. Economy. Section A invites comments on the impact the tariffs have had on the U.S. economy and asks whether the tariffs have been effective in reducing or eliminating China's acts, policies, and practices related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation. It also seeks comments on the tariffs' effects in terms of:
- Capital investments, domestic capacity and production levels, industry concentration, and profits
- U.S. technological leadership and development
- U.S. workers in terms of employment and wages
- Small businesses
- Supply chain resilience
- U.S. consumers
- Sections B and C: Sector and Industry Perspective. The remaining sections ask essentially the same questions, but from a sector/industry perspective (Section B) and in relation to specific tariff classification subheadings (Section C).
USTR's comment docket will open on November 15, 2022, and will close January 17, 2023. The docket will allow respondents to designate portions of their comments as Business Confidential, provided they certify that disclosure of the information would endanger trade secrets or profitability and that such information is not generally available. Non-confidential versions of the same responses must also be provided. Respondents may attach additional documents that supplement the responses.
As those impacted by the tariffs know, almost all Section 301 exclusions have expired and more are scheduled to expire December 31. There has been no indication that the tariff exclusion process will be re-opened. As such, this comment period may be the only available process for companies to advocate for the removal of the tariffs.
Please contact Miller & Chevalier's Customs & Import Trade team if you would like assistance in preparing and submitting comments.
*Former Miller & Chevalier attorney
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