USTR to continue Section 301 tariffs on Chinese imports for now

September 2022

In brief

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) announced on September 2 that added customs tariffs on certain imports from China would not be terminated and instead would be continued pending further review.  USTR in its notice indicated that it is retaining the tariffs because of requests received for their continuation from representatives of domestic industries that benefit from the tariffs. 

The added tariffs initially were put in place as of July 16, 2018, and August 23, 2018, under Section 301 in the investigation of China’s Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation.  USTR undertook this review of whether to continue the tariffs pursuant to a statutory four-year review.

In light of the continuation of the actions, USTR will conduct a further review of the July 6, 2018, and August 23, 2018, actions, as modified. USTR will publish a separate notice or separate notices describing the review process. The process will include opening a docket for interested persons to submit comments on, among other matters, the effectiveness of the actions in achieving the objectives of the investigation, other actions that could be taken, and the effects of such actions on the US economy, including consumers.

Observation: The USTR notice does not include a timeline for commencement or conclusion of the review of the two tariff actions.

Action item: Taxpayers that benefit from the Section 301 tariffs on Chinese imports as well as those opposed to the tariffs should continue to monitor USTR actions in this matter. Taxpayers on both sides will have an opportunity to submit comments when USTR opens a docket.

Additional information on the review process may be found in the USTR’s September 2 Federal Register notice.

For prior coverage of the Section 301 tariffs on Chinese imports, see PwC Tax Insights, USTR begins process for possible review of Section 301 tariffs on Chinese imports, May 18, 2022; US Trade Court upholds legality of Section 301 China tariffs, but remands for further explanation, April 27, 2022; USTR reinstates certain previously extended exclusions from additional duties on imports from China, April 8, 2022; USTR previews US China trade relationship, October 6, 2021.

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Anthony Tennariello

Customs and International Trade Co-leader, PwC US

Mark Truchan

Director, Customs and International Trade, PwC US

Maytee Pereira

Managing Director, PwC's Customs and International Trade Practice Co-Leader, PwC US

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