China Announces Tariff Increases

China’s Ministry of Finance announced this morning that it would increase tariffs on 5,140 U.S. goods starting on June 1 in retaliation to U.S. increases on Chinese products last week.  Many if not all the impacted products were identified for 25 percent tariffs in late December, but were frozen at 5-10 percent in light of positive negotiations between the two countries.  Few details are currently available, but the Hardwood Federation reports that:

  • 2,493 items will be tariffed at 25 percent;
  • 1,078 items will be subject to 20 percent tariffs;
  • 974 items will be subject to 10 percent tariffs; and
  • 595 items will continued to be levied at 5 percent.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that tariffs will impact goods leaving the U.S. after June 1. It seems likely that U.S. wood imports to China will be tariffed at the rates announced prior to the freeze:

  • Oak species at 25 percent;
  • Cherry and ash at 20 percent; and
  • Walnut, hard maple, tulipwood and alder at 5 percent.

However these tariff levels cannot be confirmed at this time. The Federation is also hearing that China may put into place an exclusion process allowing Chinese importers of U.S. products impacted by this latest round of increases to petition for relief of the tariffs on certain goods. Again, there is not yet confirmation of this move.

The Hardwood Federation is reaching out to contacts at the U.S. Department of Agriculture to assess the potential of economic relief for those in the hardwood industry impacted by the U.S. China dispute.

Individuals can share thoughts and concerns with members of Congress using this link.

Source: The Hardwood Federation

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