Wednesday, 21 August, 2019

Will delay tariffs on Chinese cellphones, laptops, video games

US delays tariffs on cellphones, laptops and toys from China Tariffs Delayed For Some Chinese Imports
Deanna Wagner | 13 August, 2019, 21:44

The top USA trade negotiator on Tuesday said that new tariffs on $300 billion in Chinese-made consumer goods including cell phones, toys and video game consoles would be delayed until December 15.

However, according to the United States Trade Representatives as of August 13, tariffs on certain technology products are being delayed.

The Retail Industry Leaders Association said "removing some products from the list and delaying additional 10% tariffs on other products, such as toys, consumer electronics, apparel and footwear, until December 15 is welcomed news as it will mitigate some pain for consumers through the holiday season".

These items won't be affected by the tariffs until at least December 15, but it's unclear what'll happen once that date comes.

The Xinhua news agency said that the Chinese officials issued "a solemn protest" against the punitive duties set to come into effect on 1 September.

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According to lists published by the USTR, a broad category of items taken off a $200bn tariff list a year ago will be subject to the 10% tariff as of 1 September.

A separate group of products will also be exempt altogether, "based on health, safety, national security and other factors", it added. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up almost 500 points in early trading.

The broader S&P 500 was up by roughly the same amount in percentage terms, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq fared even better, up 185 points or 2.35 per cent to 8,050.

The administration is still moving forward with 10% tariffs on much of the $300 billion of imports first disclosed in May, publishing a 122-page list of products that will face tariffs beginning September 1, including smartwatches.

Investors are taking the move as a sign of optimism for negotiations, but there may be far more cynical factors at play. The move would likely come as a relief during the holiday shopping season, as economists say the cost of the US tariffs are passed on to American businesses and consumers.