Donald Trump’s insistence on Chinese tariffs frustrates U.S. companies


After Donald Trump took office for four years, American companies looking forward to new approaches to international trade policy asked the Biden administration a question: What will happen to the tariffs he imposed on China?

The unbalanced trade balance with China, the largest source of U.S. imports, has become a fixed factor in Donald Trump’s trade policy. He imposed tariffs on billions of dollars of Chinese goods including clothes, shoes and food, which disappointed the business groups that had supported him in tax cuts and deregulation.

However, under Joe Biden’s leadership, most of the tariffs still exist, and some American business groups have become anxious.

Jon Gold, vice president of the National Retail Federation, said: “Our new government has been in office for five months, and we still don’t know what China’s trade policy is.” “This has had a significant impact on the company. Many companies are trying to survive Covid and bear the burden of additional tariffs.”

Although Biden cooperates with allies against China, his overall policy towards Beijing is closer to Trump’s approach than experts expected. At the same time, the cost of tariffs imposed by the United States on companies purchasing from China has increased. A mechanism that allows companies to apply to exclude the so-called Section 301 tariffs imposed on Chinese imports expired at the end of last year and has not yet been restored.

More than 3,500 US companies, including Coca-Cola, Disney and Ford, and smaller US manufacturers filed lawsuits over the Trump administration’s tariffs against China, setting a record for the number of lawsuits filed in the US Court of International Trade. new York. The hearing is scheduled to be held this year.

“Tariffs are very unpopular among American consumers and companies that bear the cost,” said Doug Barry, a spokesman for the US-China Business Council, a trade agency. “Many tariffs still exist, but there is no indication when or if they will be removed.”

The Biden administration has so far avoided the issue of tariffs, saying that it is conducting a “top-down review” of tariffs. China Trade PolicyThe White House stated that addressing forced labor, promoting workers’ rights, and protecting the environment are its top trade priorities.

Politically, the rush to remove tariffs may prove to be risky before the mid-term congressional elections in 2022, when any signs of weakness against China may weaken the Democratic Party in the ballot box.

U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai (Katherine Tai) is facing pressure from China’s trade policy.The chief trade negotiator of the Biden administration began diplomatic calls with foreign counterparts immediately after joining the White House in March, but she did not Talk to China Until last week.

American lawmakers have repeatedly questioned Taian about China’s tariffs on the grounds that they have caused damage to local industries. The senators tried to restore the exclusion process and allow some Chinese imports to avoid punitive additional tariffs.

When Trump hit his “Stage 1“A trade agreement in which Beijing promised to purchase US$200 billion in goods and services from the United States within two years through 2021. So far, the Biden administration has hardly stated its attitude towards China’s compliance with the agreement, nor has it hinted whether it will do so . Plan to start the “second phase” of negotiations.

Scott Kennedy, a China expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, said: “The Office of the United States Trade Representative has never publicly made any detailed rulings on China’s performance.” “This should be evaluated regularly… Worthy of love.”

Dai said in the statement that her goal is to promote a “worker-centered trade policy.” The government recently took action against a Chinese fishing fleet that allegedly used forced labor on its vessels to prevent the import of tuna and swordfish from the company.

A former government official with ties to the American business community said: “Within the government, their discussions on human rights and labor rights seem to be much more advanced than those on the economic and commercial agenda.”

“It is increasingly felt that these experienced people don’t know how to deal with China. Although they are frustrated with Trump, they did not make a plan when they took office. They just spent a lot of money domestically to improve their competitiveness. And now I just want to buy time through countless internal reviews and research,” the person said.

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