Trump Excludes 400 Chinese Goods From Tariffs

USTR has excluded 437 Chinese products from tariffs imposed a year ago.

Author: Anthony Russo   

More than 400 categories of Chinese products were temporarily exempted from tariffs imposed by President Donald Trump's administration a year ago. 

The exemptions include Christmas tree lights, plastic straws, pet supplies and printed circuit boards, according to notices posted on Friday by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.

Single-speed bikes, water drinking fountains for pets, heat exchanges, household water filter cartridges and chest-type coolers, among other products, will be exempted, as reported by Politico. 

Overall, there were more than 1,100 exemption requests by companies and other entities in the United States, according to the documents released today.

Three sets of exclusions were arranged according to the documents, One set is based on the Sept. 24, 2018, tariffs on $200 billion worth of goods, which will mature on Aug. 7, 2020. Another set is based on the tariffs that took effect on Aug. 23, 2018, of $16 billion worth of goods, which will mature one year from Friday. The other set is based off tariffs of $34 billion worth of goods implemented on July 6, 2018, and will also mature one year from Friday.

"The latest exemptions are a tacit acknowledgment by the US of the damage being done to domestic interests by the imposition of tariffs," Stephen Olson, a research fellow of the Hinrich Foundation said in an email according to CNBC.

Olson continued  "The timing, however, is interesting. It suggests that both sides have determined that further escalations are not desirable right now, so they are trying to create positive atmospherics before the October round of negotiations."

Along with Friday's tariff exemption, trade war tensions within the past couple of weeks appear to eased down, as Trump in a gesture of goodwill toward China, has delayed tariff hikes on $250 billion worth of goods. The tariffs were scheduled to take effect on Oct. 1, now moved to Oct. 15. 

In response, China's Ministry of Finance announced it would exempt $16 billion in U.S products from additional tariffs. 

China and the U.S are expected to reach an interim trade deal when the two sides meet in Washington next month, the South China Morning Post reported on Thursday.