The U.S. and China Announce New Tariffs as the Trade War Escalates

September 18, 2018

On Monday, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) released the finalized List 3 of $200 Billion worth of Chinese imports that will be subject to additional tariffs in response to China’s theft of American intellectual property and forced transfer of American technology.  The additional tariffs will take effect on September 24 and will initially be in the amount of 10%.  Starting on January 1, 2019, the additional tariffs will increase to 25%.

The list contains 5,745 tariff lines and includes items such as:

  • Consumer products such as lamps, furniture, camera equipment, and dog and cat food
  • Appliances such as refrigerators, washing machines, and dryers
  • Building products such as sandstone and gypsum
  • Commodities including copper and lead
  • Chemicals such as chlorine, barium, argon, mercury, and oxygen
  • Industrial products such as metals, tires, fabrics, leather, papers and wood
  • Meat, fish, vegetables, and grains
  • Drinks such as orange juice, malt beer, and rice wine
  • Tobacco products including cigarettes and cigars

Changes were made to the proposed list published on July 10 after the USTR and the interagency Section 301 Committee reviewed testimony and comments presented at a public hearing in August.  Roughly 300 tariff lines were removed from the list, including some consumer electronics products such as smart watches and Bluetooth devices; health and safety products such as bicycle helmets, car seats, and playpens, and certain chemical inputs for manufactured goods, textiles and agriculture.

Click here to view the finalized tariff list.

The tariffs are aimed at China to change longstanding trade practices that President Trump says are hurting American businesses.  “For months, we have urged China to change these unfair practices and give fair and reciprocal treatment to American companies,” President Trump said.  “We have been very clear about the type of changes that need to be made, and we have given China every opportunity to treat us more fairly.  But, so far, China has been unwilling to change its practices.”

China Strikes Back with Tariffs on $60 Billion Worth of U.S. Goods

Instead, China has responded by taking retaliatory steps which could harm U.S. workers and businesses.  On Tuesday, Beijing announced it will initiate a new round of tariffs on $60 Billion worth of U.S. goods starting on September 24.  The new list includes 5,207 U.S. products, and duties will be levied at rates of 5% – 10%.  While the list has not yet been translated into English at the time of this writing, Beijing had previously threatened to impose the additional tariffs on products such as meat, coffee, furniture and auto parts.

The Trump Administration is showing no sign of backing down from any type of full-blown trade war.  The President warned that he is prepared to “immediately” place tariffs on another $267 Billion worth of imports “if China takes retaliatory action against our farmers or other industries.”

If you have any questions or concerns regarding this new round of tariffs, please send an email to and a member of OCEANAIR’s Compliance team will be happy to assist you.