The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced on June 19, 2019 an exclusion process for product exclusions from the tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese products (“List 3”). The exclusion process will open at noon (EDT) on June 30, 2019.

The exclusion process for List 3 will be slightly different from the process involved for the List 1 and 2 exclusions. USTR is opening a portal at http://exclusions.USTR.gov/ for requestors to file exclusion requests and interested parties to comment on them. Among other information, the questions in the exclusion request form will require data on the company’s gross revenues, percentage of total gross sales for which the requested product accounted, and the amount of sourcing of the product from domestic or third-country suppliers.
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Late Friday, May 31, 2019, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (“USTR”) announced that they would extend the time frame for the application of increased tariffs on shipments of goods exported from China prior to May 10, 2019.   The increase from 10% to 25% in duties was announced on May 8th and was set to be applicable on all imports starting on June 1, 2019.   The USTR has now revised its earlier announcement and has stated that shipments must be entered before midnight on June 15, 2019 in order to remain subject to the 10% duty rate.  Any entries after midnight on June 15, 2019 will be subject to the increased rate of 25% announced on May 8, 2019.
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On Tuesday, May 21, 2019, USTR and the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) published in the Federal Register a request for comments on the Section 301 exclusion process for Tranche 3 tariffs which were increased from 10% to 25% on May 10, 2019. The notice also included a draft exclusion request form for the List 3 products. The draft exclusion request form includes more data requirements on U.S. and third-party sourcing, overall gross revenue, and on whether the company has applied for and/or received previous exclusion requests.
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On May 13, 2019, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) released another round of proposed tariffs on Chinese goods worth roughly $325 billion. If these new tariffs come into effect, this would be the fourth round of tariffs in the ongoing and escalating trade war between the two countries. This proposed list of new tariffs came in response to China’s retaliatory tariff increase on $60 billion worth of U.S. products which was in response to the U.S.’s sudden and unprecedented increase of tariffs to 25% on the third round of Section 301 goods which had been in effect since September 24, 2018.
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On May 8, 2019, USTR released its federal register notice on the sudden tariff increase on the third tranche (List 3) Section 301 tariffs on China. The duty rate on the estimated $200 billion worth of Chinese products will increase from 10% to 25% effective 12:01am ET on Friday, May 10, 2019. The notice also announces that an exclusion process will be instituted for these products in a separate notice.
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On Monday, May 6, 2019, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer piggybacking on the President’s tweet announced that the tariff rate on the third tranche (List 3) of Section 301 tariffs would be increased from 10% to 25% at 12:01am on May 10, 2019. Robert Lighthizer issued a statement that USTR plans to release a draft federal register notice on the tariffs today; however, nothing further has been published or announced in the Federal Register for Tuesday May 7, 2019.
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On Sunday, May 5, 2019, President Trump announced via Twitter that the tariff rate on the third tranche (List 3) of Section 301 tariffs would be increasing from 10% to 25% on Friday, May 10, 2019. According to the tweet, the reason for the increase is that the trade deal negotiations are moving “too slowly” and China’s attempt to “renegotiate.”

In the tweet the President also stated that an additional $325 billion dollars’ worth of goods “will be shortly” taxed at a rate of 25%.
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On February 24, 2019, President Trump announced via tweet that he would be delaying the increase of Section 301 tariffs on China. The U.S. planned to increase tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese products from 10% to 25% on March 1, 2019 (See our previous post here). However, in his February 24 tweet, the President expressed his approval with the status of the trade talks, stating that the parties had made “substantial progress…on important structural issues including intellectual property protection, technology transfer, agriculture, services, currency, and many other issues.” President Trump did not specify a new deadline date for imposing additional tariffs or concluding the trade talks, but anticipates hosting a summit for both himself and President Xi at Mar-a-Lago to conclude the agreement. Just hours after the tweet, President Trump also made a remark at the Governor’s Ball on the bilateral talks, saying, “And if all works well, we’re going to have some very big news over the next week or two.”
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