Trump Halts New China Tariffs, Rolls Back Some of the Prior Duties on $120B of Imports
President Donald Trump said Friday that as part of the U.S.-China trade deal Washington will not charge Beijing with any new tariffs and slightly reduce existing tariffs. He also said that “phase two” talks with China will begin immediately. The Office of the United States Trade Representative confirmed that the U.S. will be maintaining 25 percent tariffs on approximately $250 billion of Chinese imports, along with 7.5 percent tariffs on approximately $120 billion of Chinese imports. In a tweet, the president wrote “We have agreed to a very large Phase One Deal with China. They have agreed to many structural changes and massive purchases of Agricultural Product, Energy, and Manufactured Goods, plus much more. The 25% Tariffs will remain as is, with 7 1/2% put on much of the remainder ... The Penalty Tariffs set for December 15th will not be charged because of the fact that we made the deal.”
Total Retail's Take: This is welcome news for retailers, but not the ultimate solution they're hoping for. With the threat of more tariffs set to go into effect on Sunday (Dec. 15) now no longer an issue, this agreement can help some retailers rest easier. However, more work is to be done to satisfy their interests.
“For the first time in months, the United States and China are moving in the right direction on tariffs, and we congratulate negotiators from both sides for the progress they have made,” NRF Senior Vice President for Government Relations David French said. “Tariffs create uncertainty and costs for American retail supply chains, and the trade war won’t be over until they're eliminated completely. We agree that we need to realign our relationship with China, but tariffs that harm American businesses, workers and consumers are not the answer and cannot be allowed to continue."