Section 301 Tariff Exclusions (China)

Section 301 Exclusions

(October 17, 2022 Update)

The USTR announced it is opening of a comment period in the section 301 tariffs actions; this review is required by law because the Trump China 301 tariffs have been in place for over four years. The USTR seeks comments (it is required to hear) that why and how the tariffs have created an economic hardship. Comments can be filed from November 15, 2022, through 12:00 noon EST on January 17, 2023.  The full notice is available for viewing here.

(September 8, 2022 Update)

The USTR has decided, as a result of the 4 year review (explained below), to continue the Section 301 tariff actions against China. The full notice is available for viewing here.

(May 5, 2022 Update)

The USTR is conducting a 4 year review of the Section 301 action which added additional duties to goods originating from China, and they want to hear your comments if you want the tariffs continued (if you don’t want them continued, they will be a comment opportunity in the future). The following appeared in the Federal Register, detailing what is happening and what they are looking for in comments:

The first step in the four-year review process is notifying representatives of domestic industries which benefit from the trade actions, as modified, of the possible termination of the actions, and of the opportunity for these representatives to request continuation of the actions. Requests for continuation must be received in the 60-day window prior to the four-year anniversary of the respective action: Between May 7, 2022, and July 5, 2022, for the July 6, 2018 action, and between June 24, 2022, and August 22, 2022, for the August 23, 2018, action. The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) is opening dockets in these two time windows for representatives of domestic industries which benefit from the trade
actions to request continuation of the corresponding trade actions, as
modified. If the actions continue as a result of one or more requests from representatives of domestic industries which benefit from the trade actions, USTR will proceed with the next phase of the review. The second phase of the review will be announced in one or more subsequent notices, and will provide opportunities for public comments from all interested parties.

The full release, including details and subsmission guidelines, is available from the Federal Register notice.

(March 25, 2022 Update)

The U.S. Trade Representative has announced reinstated product exclusions that are valid for entries liquidated from October 12, 2021 and will continue to be excluded through December 31, 2022. The reinstated exclusions are available for any product that meets the description in the
product exclusion set out in the digit Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) subheadings and product descriptions in the Annex to the Federal Register notice, set to be published on March 28, 2022, but available at this link (see pages 3 through 26).

Section 301 Tariffs against China imports

President Trump initiated a series of Section 301 tariffs against numerous goods imported into the United States from China. These Section 301 “China Tariffs” resulted from an investigation started by the United States Trade Representative (USTR) in August of 2017. The USTR issued a long report with its findings and recommendations on March 22, 2018. The report can be read here.

The tariffs were imposed in a series of four stages. Each stage was designed to add increased pressure against China in order to punish, or at least counter-act, unfair trade practices related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation by China.

The first stage involved goods with an estimated total annual trade value of $34 billion; the second stage was for goods valued at $16 billion; the third stage is for goods valued at $200 billion; the fourth stage was to encompass goods with an annual trade value of $300 billion.

The first, second, and third stage tariffs increased the duties on certain products by 25%. The products affected depends on their classification in certain “subheadings” of the tariff schedules.

A fourth stage was, after first proposed, split into List 4A and List 4B. List 4A currently has a 7.5% tariff rate effective February 14, 2020; list 4B was suspended until further notice, based on a “phase one” deal with China concerning tariffs.

The USTR maintains a helpful summary of the status of all Section 301 tariffs, their current status, and lists of subheadings affected HERE.

Warning: This information on this page is subject to our general disclaimer, and only current through Last updated: October 17, 2022 at 16:42 pm. For legal advice, please contact us for a consultation.

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