USTR issues notice regarding statutory review of China 301 tariffs (Hardwood and softwood Plywood )

The office of the US trade representative (USTR) recently commenced the statutory process required leading up to the four-year anniversaries of the tariff actions in the Section 301 investigation of China’s acts, policies and practices related to technology transfer, intellectual property and innovation. The two actions were effective on July 6 and August 23 in 2018.

The first step in the process is to notify representatives of domestic industries that benefit from the tariff actions of the possible termination of those actions and of the opportunity for the representatives to request continuation.  If a request for continuation is received, USTR will conduct a review of the tariff actions, it said in a press note.

Requests for continuation must be submitted prior to the four-year anniversary of the action, which is July 6, 2022, for the first action in the investigation.

If one or more requests for continuation are submitted, USTR will publish an additional notice after July 6 announcing the continuation of the tariff action and will proceed with a review of the tariffs.  The review will include an opportunity for all interested persons to provide comments.

National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO) president and CEO Kim Glas, representing the full spectrum of US textiles from fibre through finished sewn products, issued a statement on the review of the China 301 tariffs.

Glas said, “We have long advocated for the 301 penalty tariffs to remain on finished textile and apparel products from China. Not only do they increase the government’s negotiating leverage to address the Chinese government’s serious predatory trade practices that have hurt our domestic manufacturing sector and that of our free trade agreement partners for decades; they also send a strong message to China that the United States is committed to addressing systemic predatory trade practices that have undermined domestic industries and their workers.

“We have also strongly advocated for a fair, transparent process to remove tariffs on certain limited textile machinery, chemicals and dyes that cannot be sourced domestically to help U.S. manufacturers compete against China. The review process, which is required by statute and being undertaken by the US Trade Representative’s office, will allow domestic manufacturers to weigh in on whether removing the tariffs will be harmful and trigger USTR to do a further review.”

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