Trade News Updates
By Margaret Lange
For the month of July, the U.S. Trade Representative continued to grant new China Section 301 exclusions while extending certain expiring exclusions. The Whitehouse and Congress took action in relation to the autonomy of Hong Kong as a result of the actions taken by China.
China Section 301 New Exclusions and Extensions Granted
Sixth List of New Product Exclusions for List 4A
The U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) issued the sixth list of product exclusions from the fourth tranche (List 4A) of Section 301 tariffs on $300 Billion in imported goods from China. The new exclusions include 61 specially prepared product descriptions, which cover 86 separate exclusion requests. The product exclusions apply retroactively to Sept. 1, 2019, the date that List 4A tariffs took effect, and extend to Sept. 1, 2020.
Seventh List of New Product Exclusions for List 4A
On Monday, July 20th, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) issued the seventh list of product exclusions from the fourth tranche (List 4A) of Section 301 tariffs on $300 Billion in goods from China. The new exclusions include eleven (11) 10-digit HTSUS subheadings and 53 specially prepared product descriptions, which together cover 242 separate exclusion requests. The product exclusions apply retroactively to Sept. 1, 2019, the date that List 4A tariffs took effect, and extend to Sept. 1, 2020. To review exclusion requests submitted to the USTR for List 4A, please see the Public Docket (USTR-2019-0017) here.
Extensions Granted for Product Exclusions Set to Expire July 9th
The USTR also extended certain exclusions from the sixth list of exclusions granted from the first tranche of Section 301 tariffs on $34 Billion in imported goods from China. The listed product exclusions were set to expire on July 9th but now are extended through December 31, 2020. The extensions cover twelve (12) of the 110 specifically provided product descriptions that were granted on July 9, 2019. The remaining 98 exclusions expired on July 9, 2020, and will now be subject to the 25% Section 301 duties.
Extensions Granted for Exclusions Set to Expire July 31st
On July 27th, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) granted extensions for fourteen (14) specific product exclusions that were set to expire on July 31, 2020. The 14 extensions apply to the first list of product exclusions granted on July 31, 2019 from the second tranche of Section 301 tariffs on $16 billion in goods from China.
The granted extensions will apply as of July 31, 2020, and will extend until December 31, 2020. The remaining 55 exclusions on the first list will expire effective July 31, 2020 and will be subject to the 25% additional Section 301 duties.
Extension Comment Period Open for List 4A Exclusions
The USTR also opened a comment period for the sixth list of granted product exclusions for Tranche 4A. These product exclusions are set to expire on September 1, 2020. The USTR posted a request for comments for the possible extension of these exclusions for up to 12 months. The comment period opened on July 15, 2020, and will close on August 14, 2020. Instructions for filing extension comments are provided in the notice.
To see a full list and status of the granted product exclusions, see our website exclusion list here.
Executive Order on Hong Kong Normalization
On July 14th, President Trump published the Executive Order (EO) ending Hong Kong’s special trade status with the U.S. in response to China’s actions to impose national security legislation on Hong Kong, which fundamentally undermines Hong Kong’s autonomy. The EO states that, as a result of China’s actions, Hong Kong is no longer sufficiently autonomous to justify differential treatment in relations to China. The EO amends certain Export Controls related to exports to Hong Kong including revoking export license exceptions for items subject to the Export Administration Regulations (15 CFR Parts 730-774), and terminating exports of defense articles to certain persons of Hong Kong. Additionally the EO imposes property and visa blocking sanctions, on any individual or entity found to have violated the Hong Kong Autonomy Act of 2020 (H.R.7440 – 116th Congress).