Written by Jamie Rodgers, CEO of J.M. Rodgers Co., Inc.

The U.S. has announced that it will impose additional tariffs of 25 percent on more than 150 goods imported from European Union countries, as well as an additional 10 percent tariff on new aircraft from France, Germany, Spain, and the United Kingdom, effective October 18, 2019. The announcement came after a World Trade Organization (WTO) arbitrator determined that the U.S. is authorized to impose up to $7.5 billion annually in countermeasures against the European Union (EU) due to its failure to fully comply with a previous WTO ruling against subsidies it provided to aircraft manufacturer Airbus.

The proposed list of goods is divided into 15 sections by country and product; it contains 10 tariff lines found as 8-digit HTS numbers.  A 10% duty will be imposed on large civil aircrafts and a 25% duty will be levied on some of Europe’s most iconic foods, beverages, and consumer goods. Examples of impacted products are Irish and Scotch whiskey, French wines, Italian cheeses, Greek yogurt, Spanish olives, and British or German hand tools.

The U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) has said there will be no Section 301 exclusion considerations.  Any products ordered and in transit that fit this classification and origin then enter U.S. commerce on October 18, 2019, will be subject to these additional tariff increases.

The complex nature of these tariffs will provide plenty of challenges and difficulties for Customs brokers, as the varying rules for countries of origin and amount necessitates anyone making these clearances to have strong compliance controls in place.   J.M. Rodgers’ Customs brokerage operations place the utmost importance and focus on compliance and we have already begun preparing our operations by reviewing product dictionaries to be sure all applicable classifications and tariffs are correctly applied to our clients’ imports.

If you’d like to discuss how these tariffs will affect your company or begin figuring out a game plan for drawback on new duties, please contact our VP of Sales Andrew Galloway at agalloway@jmrodgers.com or 973-726-5340