Highlights

  • The U.S. International Trade Commission has opened a retrospective investigation into the economic impacts of Section 301 and Section 232 tariffs on U.S. industry.
  • In July 2022, interested parties will have the opportunity to file written comments and participate in a public hearing.
  • The investigation will allow companies the opportunity to share the impact of these tariffs on their businesses, which may affect policy change.

The U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) announced in a notice issued on May 5, 2022, the commencement of a retrospective investigation of the economic impacts of Section 301 and Section 232 tariffs on the most affected U.S. industries – including on U.S. trade, production and prices. The results of the investigation, which stems from an explanatory statement included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2022, will be presented to the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations and may guide future trade-related policymaking.

As part of the investigation, which is set to conclude by March 15, 2023, the USITC will hold a public hearing on July 21, 2022, at which time interested parties will be able to share testimony. Interested parties can also file pre- and post-hearing briefs and other written submissions concerning the investigation. Upcoming dates relevant to the investigation are included below:

  • deadline for filing requests to appear at the public hearing: July 6, 2022
  • deadline for filing pre-hearing briefs: July 8, 2022
  • deadline for filing electronic copies of oral hearing statements: July 14, 2022
  • public hearing date: July 21, 2022
  • deadline for filing post-hearing briefs: Aug. 12, 2022
  • deadline for filing all other written submissions: Aug. 24, 2022
  • transmittal of the USITC report to the House and Senate Committees of Appropriations: March 15, 2023

Background

As background, former President Donald Trump first imposed additional tariffs under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 in July 2018 in response to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative's Section 301 investigation of China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation. Section 301 tariffs place additional duties of up to 25 percent on annual imports of hundreds of billions of dollars' worth of Chinese-origin goods. (See Holland & Knight's previous alert, "Trump Administration Announces Tariffs on Chinese Goods," June 18, 2018.) Likewise, in March 2018, President Trump exercised his authority under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 to impose a 25 percent tariff on steel imports, with exemptions for Canada and Mexico.

Next Steps

Participation in USITC's investigation is a valuable opportunity for interested parties to inform policymakers on the impact of these tariffs and influence future legislation and regulation. If you would like assistance participating in USITC's public hearing, filing written submissions or seeking guidance in evaluating how issues pertaining to Section 301 or Section 232 tariffs may affect your business, please reach out to the authors of this alert or another member of Holland & Knight's International Trade Group.