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USTR Announces 301 Tariff Exclusion Process

Doyle, Barlow & Mazard PLLC

On July 6, 2018, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced procedures for requesting product exclusions from the  25% tariff imposed on certain Chinese goods under Section 301.

The announcement of exclusion procedures coincided with the imposition of the first phase of tariffs on July 6, 2018 covering 818 tariff subheadings listed in USTR’s Federal Register notice on June 20. The tariffs were imposed following USTR’s investigation of the Chinese government related to technology transfer, intellectual property and innovation. The goods identified relate to  industrial sectors that are part of China’s Made in China 2025 initiative.

Interested persons have until October 9, 2018 to request a product exclusion. Requests will be open for response within 14 days after the request is posted in USTR’s docket number USTR-2018-0025 at Replies to responses will be due 7 days after the close of the 14-day response period.

Requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis but the USTR has indicated that exclusions will provide tariff relief principally where: (1) the product is only available in China; (2) duties would cause “severe economic harm;” or (3), the product is not strategically important or related to Chinese industrial programs including, in particular, “Made in China 2025.”

Product exclusion procedure

To address situations that warrant excluding a particular product from the 25% tariff, the USTR is implementing a product exclusion procedure:

  • Who is eligible?

  • What is the scope of exclusions?

  • What is the process? 

  • What information should the request form include?

  • What will USTR consider in making its decision?

  • When is the response due?

  • When will I know if my exclusion request is approved?

What steps should you take now?

  • Identify the number of specific, distinct products that are subject to the tariff based on country of origin and classification.
  • For each product subject to the tariff, compile the following information:

If you need help, we are experienced in representing companies that are impacted by import tariffs. We are well positioned to represent your company and its trade interests before the USTR, CBP, and other agencies engaged in trade regulation.

Andre Barlow
(202) 589-1838

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