The Section 301 exclusion process

On Monday, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced in a Federal Register notice the establishment of a process for requesting exclusions from Section 301 duties for products on “List 3.”

Interested parties can request that products be excluded from Section 301 duties and the USTR will review via online portal that becomes active on June 30th 2019 and will be accepted until September 30th 2019.

List 3 is composed of about 6,000 different Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) codes, and the products on it comprise around $200 billion worth of imports. Importers of List 3 items were subject to a 10% tariff when they were announced back in September of 2018. The tariff rate increased to 25% on May 10, 2019 when trade negotiations between the US and China began to break down and no deal was reached. The increase was a decisive step in showing the discussions weren’t bearing fruit.

In addition to offering options for importers and foreign traders the domestic producers of like items also have the opportunity to object to these exclusion requests. Any and all responses to individual exclusion requests including objections will be due no later than 14 days after the request is posted on USTR’s online portal.

Any successful exclusion will be retroactively effective on Sept. 24, 2018, the date on which Section 301 duties for products on List 3 went into effect. We encourage anyone to reach out to their Nelson International representative if you need assistance in creating an exclusion, or if you want to file an objection.