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Bipartisan group of senators asks for relaunch of tariff exclusion process

Published February 7, 2022

WASHINGTON (BRAIN) — A bipartisan group of U.S. senators is asking the Biden administration to establish "a more comprehensive" process to exclude some products from the current Section 301 tariffs on the import of some products from China. Most bicycle products from China have been subject to a 25% Section 301 tariff since Jan. 1, 2021, when previous exclusions expired.

Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Tom Carper (D-DE) were the lead authors of the letter to U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai

The Biden administration relaunched an exclusion process in October 2021.

Portman and Carper said the new process is more narrow in scope and limited to certain products. In their letter, the senators ask the administration to take a more comprehensive approach to ensure that American businesses and manufacturers can receive relief. They said that under the new exclusion process, only one percent of imports under the original exclusion process are eligible for consideration.

"We write to express our strong support for establishing a comprehensive exclusion process for U.S. manufacturers, producers, and importers to request relief from tariffs placed on products from China pursuant to Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974," the senators wrote. "We believe that a comprehensive exclusion process that gives an opportunity for businesses affected by the tariffs to apply for limited, yet renewable, relief is a valuable component of our strategy to counter China's unfair trade practices. In addition to easing the tariffs' negative impacts on U.S. businesses, it would also give those businesses additional time and resources to move supply chains out of China and return manufacturing to the United States."

The letter also suggested that products that are exclusively available only from China should be excluded.

"As part of restarting the exclusion process, and to ease the administrative burden of doing so, we suggest presumptively excluding any product for which imports from China represent nearly all imports to the United States. Even years after the Section 301 tariffs were imposed, the exceptional reliance on China for those specific imports suggests that moving these supply chains out of China is uniquely unlikely, and that our efforts to diversify production locales and reshore manufacturing would be better spent on other products," the letter reads.

In addition to Senators Portman and Carper, the letter was signed by Senators Grassley (R-IA), Kaine (D-VA), Feinstein (D-CA), Young (R-IN), Coons (D-DE), Cassidy (R-LA), Shaheen (D-NH), Boozman (R-AR), Wicker (R-MS), Hoeven (R-ND), Collins (R-ME), Manchin (D-WV), Blunt (R-MO), Lummis (D-WY), Tillis (R-NC), Cornyn (R-TX), Warnock (D-GA), Bennet (D-CO), Graham (R-SC), Van Hollen (D-MD), Warner (D-VA), Fischer (R-NE), Thune (R-ND), Sinema (D-AZ), Hickenlooper (D-CO), Cruz (R-TX), T. Scott (R-SC), Klobuchar (D-MN), Murray (D-WA), Burr (R-ND), Moran (R-KS), Marshall (R-KS), Smith (D-MN), Kelly (D-AZ), Barrasso (R-WY), Risch (R-ID), Blackburn (R-TN), Hagerty (R-TN), and Capito (R-WV).

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Topics associated with this article: Tariffs

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