Last week, it briefly looked to the world as if the ongoing trade war between the USA and China was coming to an end. On Friday, Chinese Commerce Ministry spokesman Gao Feng said at a press conference that there was a tentative agreement in place for a trade deal between the two feuding countries and that as part of that deal there would be a wide rollback on the mutual tariffs that had been imposed by both countries.

After a record-breaking haul of over $7 billion in duties collected by US Customs in September, this was greeted as welcome news by importers and exporters feeling the squeeze of the increased tariff burdens.

However, the good news was short-lived. President Trump announced later in the day that there was no agreement formally in place, and that nothing had yet been agreed to. This was reiterated by Peter Navarro, the trade representative carrying out the negotiations, who said that this was merely an attempt by the Chinese delegation to use the press to hurry negotiations along.

Many such announcements have been made since the disputes began. Before the G20 meeting in 2018, both the American and Chinese governments announced that a deal seemed imminent, but since then there has been little in the way of public progress.

This all stands in the shadow of a potential new tranche of tariffs on all imports from China, ostensibly set to go into effect on December 15th.  If these are allowed to go into effect, then nearly every product imported from China would be subject to a 10% or 25% duty, representing billions more in duties paid.

Importers and exporters need to be aware of their opportunities to pursue refunds of these duties, as well as be assured that their brokers are properly handling their duty payments and classifications. JM Rodgers is a perfect partner to help you navigate the changing landscape and explore all your options- if you’d like to discuss further, please contact our VP of Sales Andrew Galloway at or 973-726-5340.