Biden Administration Releases its Review of Section 301 Tariffs on Chinese Imports

This week, the Biden administration announced the conclusion of the four-year review of the Section 301 tariffs on imports from China, increasing tariffs on several sectors and establishing a new, very limited exclusion process for domestic machinery. The administration is not removing the current Section 301 tariffs – which impact more than 300 commonly used components, materials, and parts used in the marine manufacturing process.

For the past four years, the Biden administration has been reviewing trade and tariff policies for realigning the U.S.-China trade relationship. Throughout the process, the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) has urged the administration to reinstate all exclusions for marine products and reopen the exclusions process for every imported product currently impacted by Section 301 tariffs. While the complete list of products affected by this action has not yet been released, the White House announcement states that the increased tariffs on Chinese imports are set to target products "across strategic sectors such as steel and aluminum, semiconductors, electric vehicles, batteries, critical minerals, solar cells, ship-to-shore cranes, and medical products."

“The Administration’s decision to maintain Section 301 tariffs on products from China is very disappointing,” said Frank Hugelmeyer, President and CEO of NMMA. “As a uniquely American industry, with 95 percent of the boats sold in the U.S. made in the U.S., marine manufacturers and American consumers continue to bear the brunt of this trade war. It is especially concerning the Administration refuses to reopen the exclusion process for marine products, which can provide limited but important relief for marine businesses. At a time when marine manufacturers are facing economic headwinds, these tariffs continue to put our economy at an even greater disadvantage.”

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) intends to issue a Federal Register notice next week announcing procedures for interested parties to comment on the proposed increases in the Section 301 tariffs and information concerning the proposed exclusion process. NMMA plans to submit comments. The Federal Register notice should provide additional details on the implementation of the tariff increase and the proposed exclusion process.

NMMA stands ready to help all stakeholders navigate the public comment period and continue providing updates as this process develops. If your business has been impacted by Section 301 tariffs on products imported from China, please contact NMMA director of federal government relations, Clay Crabtree at [email protected].