In September, the fourth round (4A) of Section 301 tariffs on Chinese goods were implemented at 15 percent with a fifth round (4B) currently set for implementation on December 15th. Round 4B covers most holiday decorations that are currently imported duty free.
By the end of October, the USTR announced 14 rounds of exclusions covering over one thousand narrowly defined products.Exclusions are still being granted for goods on the first three rounds of these tariffs and requests are being accepted for exclusions covering products found in round 4A. Trade talks between the U.S. and China will continue in November.
In October, the US implemented additional tariffs on goods from certain EU countries. These tariffs are related to illegal subsidies provided to aircraft manufacturer Airbus, and are specific to certain products from certain EU member countries. Mostly, the tariffs are being assessed against agricultural products such as olives and cheese (regrettably, also wine and Scotch whiskey) but, some industrial equipment is included as well. The rates and affected products vary by country, so please check the list or inquire on how these are applied. EU member countries have not retaliated since these tariffs are sanctioned by the WTO but there are tariff actions unrelated to this issue that may be initiated in 2020.
Some Customs fees were increased on October 1, including changes to the minimum and maximum charges for the Merchandise Processing Fees (MPF), which are charged on most entries. The new amounts are a $26.79 minimum with a maximum charge of $519.76. But the ad valorem rate for the MPF will remain at 0.3464 percent.
Customs has opened use of the Type 86 entry for low value shipments to all brokers. This entry type, which applies to shipments with a value under $800, allows for duty free treatment on products that require information for other governmental agencies such as FDA. Previously these types of entries did not allow for duty free treatment based on the additional required reporting.
Customs has proposed numerous changes that effect Customs Brokers, including very strict requirements for validating powers of attorneys obtained from clients. These changes are now in the comment period which precedes the actual adoption of the regulatory changes. CV International stands with the NCBFAA in strongly supporting Customs’ efforts to safeguard the security of the supply chain while opposing many of the new validation requirements as creating an extremely burdensome exercise while providing little improvement to security.
For more information, please contact Sam McClure, Director of Customs & Compliance Services, .