US China

China has announced a new round of tariff exclusions for US agricultural products currently impacted by the retaliatory Section 301-tariffs.

While the announcement enumerates approximately 150 agricultural and agricultural-related tariff lines, eligible enterprises will be able to apply for a tariff exclusion for any tariff line, provided that tariff line has not already received a tariff exclusion.

The tariff exclusions are approved for individual applicants, they will not automatically extend to all importers.

Fresh produce items featured in the 150 products lines include carrots, turnips, pistachios, oranges, table grapes and cherries.

President of the Northwest Horticultural Council, Mark Powers, indicated that while some products are included, there are key items missing.

“China will accept submissions for the duty waivers beginning on March 2. Apples and pears are not on the list, however, there is a clause in the announcement that means applicants may submit an application for adding excluded products,” said Powers.

Powers says the announcement only pertains to Section 301 retaliatory tariffs, not Section 232, which refers to steel and aluminium tariffs.

The current Chinese tariff on US cherries (as well as apples and pears) is 55 per cent. Section 301 duties account for 30 per cent of the total 55 per cent. The remaining portion is China’s most favoured nation (MFN) tariff for fresh cherries (10 per cent), plus China’s 232 steel and aluminium retaliatory tariff (15 per cent).