On October 17, 2022, as part of the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative’s (USTR’s) four-year review of the Section 301 tariffs on goods imported from China, the USTR issued a notice in the Federal Register requesting public comments on the effectiveness of the tariffs in achieving the objectives of Section 301, other actions that could be taken, and the effects of such actions on the United States economy, including consumers. This comment process follows the USTR’s receipt of requests to continue the Section 301 tariffs.

The public comment period will open on November 15, 2022 and continue until January 17, 2023. By November 1, 2022, the USTR will publish a copy of the questions for the docket on the USTR's online portal.

The USTR’s review

The USTR is particularly interested in comments on the effects of Section 301 tariffs’ on:

  • Counteracting or eliminating China’s acts, policies, and practices related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation.
  • Other actions or modifications that would be more effective in obtaining the elimination of or in counteracting China’s acts, policies, and practices related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation.
  • The U.S. economy, including U.S. consumers.
  • Domestic manufacturing, including capital investment, domestic capacity and production, and profits.
  • U.S. technology, including technological leadership and development.
  • U.S. workers, including employment and wages.
  • U.S. small businesses.

The USTR is also seeking comments regarding whether the Section 301 tariffs have resulted in higher additional duties on inputs used for additional manufacturing in the U.S. than the additional duties on particular downstream products or finished goods incorporating those inputs.

The process for submitting a comment

Comments may be submitted through the USTR’s online portal between November 15, 2022 and January 17, 2023.

The USTR will post comment submissions in the docket for public inspection, except those containing business confidential information.

Key takeaway

This is a key opportunity for companies and importers to request modifications to the Section 301 tariffs. Companies and importers impacted by the Section 301 tariffs should consider submitting public comments to ensure their interests are considered during the review process.