Quick Facts: Developments in the Trade War with China

3 min

In the last ten days, the trade war between the United States and China, which had seemed close to resolution, has ramped up significantly. On Sunday, May 5, 2019, President Trump announced via Twitter that the United States was increasing Section 301 tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese products to 25 percent from 10 percent and considering new tariffs on another $325 billion in Chinese imports. The week that followed saw a flurry of notices from the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) implementing the tariffs, from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) regarding the implementation of the tariffs, and from the Chinese Ministry of Finance imposing retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods. Between these actions, USTR also announced developments regarding products excluded from the Section 301 tariffs. To ensure awareness of the recent developments, impacts thereof, and relevant dates, we provide the following quick reference chart.

Issuing Entity
Date Issued
Effective Date / Key Information

Increased tariffs on "List 3" goods from China from 10% to 25%.


May 9, 2019

  • The increased 25% tariff is effective for goods on List 3 that meet both of the following conditions: (i) those entered for consumption, or withdrawn from a warehouse for consumption, on or after 12:01 a.m. EDT on May 10, 2019, and (ii) exported to the United States on or after May 10, 2019.
  • The complete list of products subject to the tariff increase is available here.

Announcements of forthcoming exclusion process for "List 3" goods


May 9, 2019

  • As part of the increased tariff rate for List 3 goods, USTR plans to establish a product exclusion process for products covered by List 3.
  • The timing and implementation of the product exclusion process are still forthcoming.

Clarification regarding those imports impacted by the tariff increase


May 10, 2019

  • Clarification that any goods exported to the United States before 12:01 a.m. EDT on May 10, 2019 (i.e., goods that are currently in transit or held in bonded warehouses) will not be subject to the tariff increase, provided the goods are entered for consumption before June 1, 2019.
  • These goods will continue to be subject to the 10% additional Section 301 tariff.

China announced retaliatory tariffs on an additional $60 Billion of U.S. goods

Ministry of Finance of the People's Republic of China

May 13, 2019

  • Retaliatory tariffs effective June 1, 2019:
    • 25% tariffs on 2,493 items.
    • 20% tariffs on 1,078 items.
    • 10% tariffs on 974 items.
    • 5% tariffs to continue on 595 items.
  • The complete list (in Chinese), including HTS codes subject to the tariffs, is available for download here.

Proposed additional tariffs on approximately $300 billion of Chinese goods ("List 4")


May 13, 2019

  • Request for public comments on USTR's proposal to impose Section 301 tariffs of 25% on List 4:
    • Comments on the proposed tariffs required by June 17, 2019.
    • Requests to appear at the June 17, 2019 public hearing on the proposal required by June 10, 2019.
  • The complete list of HTS codes and products potentially subject to the proposed tariffs is available here.

Issued new round of product exclusions from "List 1"


May 14, 2019

  • USTR released additional product exclusions from the initial Section 301 tariffs imposed on Chinese goods ("List 1") effective July 6, 2018.
  • The exclusions cover approximately 515 separate exclusion requests: the excluded 10-digit HTS subheadings cover 86 separate requests, and the 35 specially prepared product descriptions cover approximately 429 separate requests.
  • The complete list of products excluded is available here.

Venable's International Trade Group continues to monitor trade developments. If you have any questions regarding how increased or proposed tariffs may affect your business, or you wish to submit public comments or testify at the public hearing, Venable's International Trade Group is available to advise and assist.