SEMA eNews Vol. 23, No. 31, July 30, 2020

Americans for Free Trade Coalition Supports Bipartisan Legislation in U.S. Congress to Extend Tariff Exclusions

By SEMA Washington, D.C., Staff

The Americans for Free Trade (AFT) coalition, which includes SEMA, sent a letter urging the U.S. Congress to pass bipartisan legislation to extend product exclusions granted under the Section 301 China tariffs for at least one year. More than 160 trade associations signed the letter, citing the need to provide certainty for companies that have been granted exclusions and to give transparency to the current exclusion process.

The AFT coalition represents every part of the U.S. economy, including manufacturers, farmers, retailers and service suppliers, and collectively represents tens of millions of American jobs. The legislation (H.R. 7665) was introduced by Representatives Jackie Walorski (R-IN) and Collin Peterson (D-MN).

“As businesses around the country try to recover from the economic harm caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, they need as much certainty as possible to ensure a full and successful recovery,” Americans for Free Trade wrote. “The exclusion process as implemented by the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) should not stand as a barrier to a businesses’ ability to recover. Businesses often have to wait months—and some have waited up to a year—to find out from USTR whether they have been granted an exclusion.”

The AFT coalition has previously asked the Trump Administration to suspend or defer the collection of all tariffs during COVID-19 given the economic uncertainty faced by American businesses. To date, those requests have been largely denied.

For more information, contact Stuart Gosswein at stuartg@sema.org.

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