American and Chinese flags merging together.

Good news for importers. Companies are being given the chance to obtain product exclusions from list 1 of Section 301, according to the announcement made on July 6, by the U.S. Trade Representative’s (USTR) office.

For each request, the USTR may consider the following

  • Whether a product is available from a source outside of China.
  • If the additional duties would cause severe economic harm to the requestor or other U.S. interests.
  • If the particular product is strategically important or related to Chinese industrial programs including “Made in China 2025”.

The public will have until October 9 to file a request for a product exclusion. Once a request is filed and posted on, public responses will be collected for 14 days, with an additional seven days for rebuttals.

Exclusions will be effective for one year upon the publication of the exclusion determination in the Federal Register and will apply retroactively to July 6, 2018.

Since exclusions will be made on a product basis, a particular exclusion will apply to all imports of the product, regardless of whether the importer filed a request. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection will apply the tariff exclusions based on the product.

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