New Section 232 and Section 301 Tariffs Announced

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New Section 232 and Section 301 Tariffs Announced

KRIEGER | worldwide®

Norman Krieger, Inc.

 

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New Section 232 and Section 301 Tariffs Announced

12/3/19

Steel and Aluminum Tariffs from Brazil and Argentina

On Monday, December 2, 2019, President Trump announced that the Section 232 25% steel and 10% aluminum tariffs would be reinstated on imports from Brazil and Argentina. Brazil and Argentina were among several countries that were granted a temporary exemption from the Section 232 tariffs after negotiating a deal with the United States. President Trump stated that the reasoning behind enforcing the tariffs is that the “massive devaluation” of the countries’ currencies gives them an unfair trade advantage.

Some economists believe the reinstatement is a warning to China to not manipulate its currency. On Monday, Secretary Wilbur Ross said, “Even our friends must play by the rules. Our best allies must also live by the rules. The lower their currency, the cheaper their products coming in. He [Trump] felt he had to do something about it. And they’re not the only one where there are currency issues. For the moment, I don’t know that China is such a bad problem with currency. But they have been in the past.”

France Section 301 Tariffs

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) proposed a 100% Section 301 duty on certain French products. The USTR proposed a preliminary list of 63 HTSUS subheadings with an annual trade value of $2.4 billion including, cheese, whey protein concentrates, butter, skincare products, handbags, sparkling wine, kitchenware, and more.

The Section 301 duties on products from France are in response to the French Digital Services Tax (DST). A report released by the USTR outlines that the DST imposes a 3% levy on revenues generated by companies that provide “digital interface” and “targeted advertising” services. The DST applies to companies that meet global and French revenue thresholds for the covered services (i.e. Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon).

The USTR requests comments on the proposed duties by January 6, 2020 and will hold a public hearing on January 7, 2020. All submissions must be in English and sent electronically via www.regulations.gov. There is no proposed effective date for the additional duties or a final list of HTSUS subheadings at this time.





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