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20 Sep, 2019 09:15

Dog leashes, plastic straws & Christmas lights: Trump exempts 400+ Chinese goods from tariff list

Dog leashes, plastic straws & Christmas lights: Trump exempts 400+ Chinese goods from tariff list

The US is temporarily exempting some 400 types of Chinese products from tariffs imposed by President Donald Trump’s administration. The list includes coffee filters, patio torches and skateboards.

The products about to be excluded from the 25-percent duty are listed in the notices scheduled to be published by the Office of the US Trade Representative in the Federal Register on Friday. The move to exempt the goods stems from some 1,100 exclusion requests made by companies in the United States over the past several months, the pre-published documents state.

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The exclusions include 437 types of products, everyday items use like plastic straws, dog leashes and coffee filters, but also laminated flooring panels, vending machines and some electric-powered skateboards and motorcycles. Ahead of the holiday season, Christmas tree lights made in China will also be exempt from additional duties.

All the products are part of the $250 billion worth of Chinese goods that the Trump administration taxed last year. While some exemptions are set to expire by this time next year, some of them will be lifted earlier – in August 2020.

The move follows a decision by China’s Ministry of Finance to exempt 16 US product lines from China’s own tariffs last week. Following that gesture, Trump postponed the implementation of the latest round of tariffs on Chinese goods by two weeks.

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The world’s two largest economies have been engaged in a tariff war for over a year now, with both sides alternately hitting each other’s economies with tariff hikes. The conflict’s escalation in August has been a blow to the US markets, with some economic forecasters predicting a recession. The latest release of exemptions comes as both states are getting ready to meet in Washington in October for the next round of high-level talks regarding their ongoing trade and tariff dispute.

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