AEM: Trade War with China Bad for Business

July 11, 2018

The Trump administration published its intentions to assess 10 percent tariffs on another $200 billion of Chinese products in today's Federal Register

The 205-page list of to-be-tariffed products, obtained from The Guardian and available here, ranges from fresh fish to film to animal fur. However, deep within the list are products and materials found in the construction and industrial industries.

Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) President Dennis Slater issued the following statement this morning opposing the escalating global trade war created by the Trump administration’s decision to propose a new round of $200 billion in tariffs on Chinese goods:  

“Nobody wins in a global trade war. American workers, consumers, and the U.S. economy lose. Not only will these tariffs threaten many of the 1.3 million jobs our industry supports, they also hurt farmers who are already reeling from low commodity prices.

On top of this, these tariffs are eliminating many of the economic gains created by last year’s tax reform. Tariffs are taxes on consumers and businesses. We need policies that encourage manufacturing in the United States. Not the opposite.”

On July 6, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection started to collect duties on $34 billion worth of goods, as outlined in a published list made available by the federal register on April 6. In response, China retaliated by imposing $34 billion of tariffs on U.S. goods.

In addition, another $16 billion worth of tariffs proposed by the Trump administration on Chinese goods is already undergo further review in a public notice and comment process, including a public hearing. 

Combining the newly proposed $200 billion in additional tariffs on Chinese goods with the $50 billion already in place or threatened by the Trump administration, the total makes up for about half of the dollar amount in goods imported to the U.S. from China just last year."

With the publication in the Federal Register, the administration will have a public hearing August 20, 2018, followed by a two-month consultation on these proposed tariffs, after which the tariffs could be imposed in September.

Today's Wall Street Journal offers a detailed article on how China may respond to the new tariffs. Read ‘Shocked’ by Latest U.S. Tariff Plan, Beijing Seeks Retaliatory Action here.