Aluminum and Steel Tariffs

The new US Aluminum and Steel Tariffs explained

On March 8, President Trump issued Proclamations 9704 and 9705, which look at the adjustment of steel and aluminum imports into the United States. These proclamations were issued under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, which allows the president to initiate an investigation to determine whether the national security is threatened by imports.

To understand the scope of these import adjustments, it is essential to know the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) numbers for different aluminum and steel products. These HTS numbers are crucial because they set tariff rates and categories for all items imported into the U.S.

Aluminum Product Affected

Certain aluminum products will have an additional 10 percent duty. According to HTS, aluminum articles are: “(a) unwrought aluminum (HTS 7601); (b) aluminum bars, rods, and profiles (HTS 7604); (c) aluminum wire (HTS 7605); (d) aluminum plate, sheet, strip, and foil (flat rolled products) (HTS 7606 and 7607); (e) aluminum tubes and pipes and tube and pipe fitting (HTS 7608 and 7609); and (f) aluminum castings and forgings (HTS 7616.99.51.60 and 7616.99.51.70), including any subsequent revisions to these HTS classifications.” Steel articles include: “7206.10 through 7216.50, 7216.99 through 7301.10, 7302.10, 7302.40 through 7302.90, and 7304.10 through 7306.90, including any subsequent revisions to these HTS classifications.”

 

The HTS codes affected are as follows:

  • 7601—unwrought aluminum
  • 7604—aluminum bars, rods, and profiles
  • 7605—aluminum wire
  • 7606 and 7607—aluminum plate, sheet, strip, and foil (flat-rolled products)
  • 7608 and 7609—aluminum tubes and pipes and tube and pipe fitting
  • 7616.99.51.60 and 7616.99.51.70—aluminum castings and forgings

 

Countries affected – Aluminum

As of June 1,2018, all countries of origin except Argentina and Australia.

Steel Products Affected

Certain steel products will have an additional 25 percent duty. The HTS codes affected are as follows:

  • 7206.10 through 7216.50
  • 7216.99 through 7301.10
  • 7302.10
  • 7302.40 through 7302.90
  • 7304.10 through 7306.90

Countries affected – Steel

As of June 1, 2018, all countries of origin except Argentina, Australia, Brazil and South Korea.

Implications

Many say these import tariffs will help bring manufacturing jobs back to the U.S., which was a cornerstone of the Trump campaign. The Washington Post reported that executives in the steel and aluminum industries are already hiring as a result of the proclamations, in some cases offering $60,000/year for new employees as soon as President Trump signs the paperwork.

Because the U.S. is imposing tariffs against other countries, many countries, including China Canada, Mexico and the EU, have stated they will retaliate and impose tariffs on U.S.-imported products. China has stated they will impose tariffs on soya beans, aeroplanes and cars imported and another 103 products imported into China from the U.S. Mexico announced it will impose tariffs on $3 billion worth of U.S. exports while Canada has announced it will impose a tariff on $13 billion worth of U.S. products and the tariff is set to go into effect on July 1, 2018.

Exclusion Process

On March 18, 2018, the Department of Commerce announced the process for requesting products to be excluded from the tariff on aluminum and steel tariff. Check back next week to find out how you can request for your products to be excluded from the Section 232 tariff on aluminum and steel.

 

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