October 7, 2021Client Alert

USTR to Open Comments on Reinstating Certain China Tariff Exclusions

A day after Ambassador Katherine Tai, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), announced her agency would start a targeted exclusion process, USTR announced that it would take comments regarding the reinstatement of the 549 exclusions that received extensions.

You can view the request for comment here, the list of eligible products here, and a press release announcing the move here.

USTR will open its comment portal on October 12 and will receive them through December 1, 2021. It will evaluate each exclusion on a case-by-case basis and encouraged commenters to address:

  • Whether the product or a comparable product is available from a supplier in the U.S. or a third country
  • Changes in the global supply chain since September 2018 regarding the product or industry in question;
  • For those seeking an exclusion reinstatement, efforts taken since September 2018 to source the product from the U.S. or a third country; and
  • Domestic capacity for producing the product in the U.S.

USTR will also evaluate whether or not reinstating the exclusion will severely harm the commenter or U.S. interests, including the impact on small business, employment, manufacturing output, and critical supply chains in the U.S. Overall, these criteria appear to represent a continuation of the approach of the Trump Administration to exclusions.

Reinstated exclusions will be retroactive to October 12, 2021.

We do not know if this is the only announcement on exclusions. Ambassador Tai’s remarks yesterday were relatively light on details writ large but especially as it pertained to exclusions. It is not clear if "targeted” means only allowing the opportunity to reinstate certain exclusions or if they will reopen a broader exclusion process as well.

The MBS Trade Team has extensive experience navigating the Section 301 tariff exclusion process and other complex trade issues. To learn more about our expertise and services, click here

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