Makers and merchants of consumer tech and home appliances breathed a collective sigh of relief yesterday when President Trump announced a second delay in a planned tariff spike on Chinese imports.
The move, which was to go into effect this Saturday, would have raised the duty from its current 10 percent to 25 percent on some $200 billion worth of products, including CE and major appliance components, parts and finished goods.
In a pair of tweets posted last night, Trump said his administration has made “substantial progress” in its trade talks with China, including key sticking points like the protection of intellectual property and technology.
He said a final agreement could be reached at a forthcoming summit with China’s President Xi Jinping that would be held at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago golf club in Palm Beach, Fla., presumably late next month.
Trump previously delayed the tariff increase, which was originally scheduled to go into effect on Jan. 1. A new date for the 25 percent rate was not set.
Speaking for the greater consumer tech community, Gary Shapiro, president/CEO of the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), said in a statement that "We welcome the Trump administration not raising tariffs to 25 percent. Today, tariffs are costing the tech industry an additional $1 billion per month and the cost of 5G products and parts from China have skyrocketed. We urge both sides to move forward to a permanent resolution that will address trade issues with China, while also protecting American leadership in innovation."
Echoed Matthew Shay, president/CEO of the National Retail Foundation (NRF): “The decision to avoid a tariff hike is a positive development, and we encourage the administration to build on this momentum and reach a resolution that will eliminate uncertainty for American businesses and consumers.”
The NRF said recently imposed tariffs cost U.S. businesses $2.7 billion in November alone, and that a 25 percent tariff could lead to the loss of nearly 1 million American jobs.