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

The trade war rages on. In an unexpected move, President Trump announced last week that the imposition of section 301 tariffs would expand beyond the $200 million of imported products from China currently on the list and will soon apply to the remainder of imports starting September 1st. The President left open the possibility that these, like the ones before, could also rise to 25% eventually.

During the announcement of the tariffs, the President said that China had agreed to purchase more US agricultural goods, but only a few days later China retaliated by declaring not only would they be putting a stop to state purchases of American agricultural goods, but that already-ordered products may get subject to a tariff. This threatens to exacerbate problems US farmers have had, as many rely heavily on a robust export trade with China.

The US tariffs are being imposed as the earlier ones under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974, which ultimately allows them to be claimed on duty drawback. With China now ranked as the second-largest trading partner with the United States, there are going to be a lot of companies that are going to be searching for a way to mitigate their newfound duty impact.

Apart from tariffs on China, earlier last week during a press conference about a deal to export meat products to the EU, the President also mentioned the possibilities of more tariffs on European goods if conditions weren’t met. Whether those specific auto tariffs, which have been threatened for some time, come about or not, the message is clear- tariffs are a fact of life and will be a regular part of the Trump administration’s policy.

Duty drawback should be a part of these plans for every international firm. The tariffs imposed since a year ago have brought considerable amounts of companies into drawback programs where previously they had little or no tariffs, and any firm that is affected would be remiss to not take preparations to evaluate their potential for drawback refunds.

If you’d like to discuss your company’s potential for drawback under the new tariffs, please contact our VP of Sales Andrew Galloway at agalloway@jmrodgers.com or 973-726-5340.