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On November 15, 2022, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) opened its docket (USTR-2022-0014) seeking public comments in its review of the Trump-era tariffs on Chinese imports. The tariffs were issued by then-President Donald J. Trump under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974.

USTR seeks comments from interested parties on the effectiveness of the tariffs in achieving the goals of the trade action, other actions or modifications that could be taken that would be more effective, and the effects on various aspects of the U.S. economy.

After receiving many requests for the continuation of the tariffs, the USTR is now presenting interested parties the opportunity to advocate for potential modifications to the Lists 1, 2, 3, and 4A tariffs and related temporary exclusions under the statutory four-year review through its questionnaire.

For further background on the Section 301 tariffs and the review process, please see our blog post here.

USTR’s Questionnaire for Comments

The USTR’s questionnaire is organized into three sections with increasing levels of specificity of the tariff’s impact. Section A focuses on the broader economy as a whole; Section B concentrates on industry sector specific areas; and Section C hones in on specific tariff headings.

Under Section A, commentors can address the effectiveness of the tariffs in counteracting the harmful Chinese trade practices the USTR has identified, how the tariffs have affected the U.S. economy as a whole, and how the tariffs could be changed or improved.

Under Section B, commentators can specify how the tariffs have impacted a specific industry and whether they have been effective in combating Chinese trade practices. Commentators can also provide potential alternatives to the tariffs, and address how the tariffs impact domestic manufacturing, U.S. employment and wages, small businesses, supply chain resiliency, and consumer goods.

Under Section C, commentators can describe why certain tariff subheadings should be removed or maintained, and how the tariffs have impacted consumers, domestic manufacturing, wages, and supply chains, among others. Commentators can also suggest additional goods not currently covered by the tariffs, but which the commenter thinks should be added.

Interested parties do not need to fill out all the sections, but may focus only on those they choose to address. Parties may also submit business confidential information, which will not be made public.

The docket will remain open for comment until January 17, 2023.

Our international trade team is ready to assist companies and associations considering comments.