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UPDATE: USTR ANNOUNCES ITS FIRST EXCLUSIONS GRANTED TO SEC. 301 LIST 4A PRODUCTS

On March 12, 2020, the U.S. Trade Representative (“USTR”) announced two new groups of exclusions from the Section 301 trade remedies imposed on Chinese-origin products.

The first group, consisting of 5 ten-digit HTS provisions, relates to items on China 301 List 3 (which is part of the $200 billion trade action) which, unless excluded, are currently subject to an additional tariff of 25% ad valorem. The list of newly-excluded items (which supplements the exclusions previously granted by the USTR) is provided below. The exclusions will be retroactive to September 24, 2018 (the date when the China 301 List 3 additional tariffs took effect) and are slated to remain in effect through August 7, 2020.

The second group, consisting of 19 product descriptions within specified HTS provisions, relates to items on China 301 List 4A (which is part of the $300 billion trade action) which, unless excluded, are currently subject to an additional tariff of 7.5% ad valorem. The list of newly-excluded items (which supplements the exclusions previously granted by the USTR) is also provided below. The exclusions will be retroactive to September 1, 2019 (the date when the China 301 List 4A additional tariffs took effect) and are slated to remain in effect through September 1, 2020.

With respect to both newly announced groups of exclusions, any claims for duty refunds require affirmative action on the part of importers in the form of post-entry corrections or protests (depending upon the liquidation status of the underlying entries). CBP has also entertained requests to extend the liquidation of entries to allow additional time for the filing of corrections.

Significantly, China 301 exclusions are product-specific, not company-specific. Thus, if a product is described by an exclusion, the importer may benefit regardless of who filed for the exclusion. Information as to previously excluded items can be accessed at the end of this notice.

If your business is interested in seeking a refund of past duties paid under Section 301, and/or discussing Section 301 mitigation strategies, please contact our office and speak with one of our attorneys.

March 12, 2020 – Newly Excluded Items from China 301 List 3

For each of the newly excluded items, the exclusion covers the below full ten-digit HTS provision. For reference purposes only, we have inserted a shorthand reference in parentheses. However, for the below exclusions, it is the ten-digit HTS provision that governs, not our parenthetical description. Please let us know if you have any questions on the scope of any particular exclusion.

  1. 3923.21.0030 (certain reclosable (with integral extruded closure) sacks and bags of polymers of ethylene)
  2. 3923.21.0095 (certain other sacks and bags of polymers of ethylene)
  3. 3926.20.9050 (certain plastic articles of apparel and clothing accessories not elsewhere specified)
  4. 4015.19.1010 (certain disposable non-medical rubber gloves)
  5. 5603.12.0090 (certain nonwovens, of man-made filaments)

March 12, 2020 – Newly Excluded Items from China 301 List 4A

For each of the below newly excluded items, the exclusion covers only items that are both covered by the product description and classified within the indicated HTS provision (i.e., not all products within the indicated HTS provisions are covered). Please let us know if you have any questions on the scope of any particular exclusion.

1) Bowls of molded plastics, with clips for retaining guide wires during surgical procedures (described in statistical reporting number 3926.90.9990)

2) Disposable graduated medicine dispensing cups of plastics (described in statistical reporting number 3926.90.9990)

3) Pads of foam plastics, with hook and loop fastener straps, integrated arm protectors, and accessory headrest, body straps, lift sheets, hand grips and face masks, of a kind used for positioning patients during medical procedures (described in statistical reporting number 3926.90.9990)

4) Single-use sterile drapes and covers of plastics, of a kind used to protect the sterile field in surgical operating rooms (described in statistical reporting number 3926.90.9990)

5) Sterile decanters of polystyrene plastics, each of a kind used to transfer aseptic fluids or medication to and from sterile bags, vials or glass containers (described in statistical reporting number 3926.90.9990)

6) Cold packs consisting of a single-use, instant, endothermic chemical reaction cold pack combined with a textile exterior lining (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

7) Disposable shoe and boot covers of man-made fiber fabrics (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

8) Eye compresses, each consisting of a fabric cover filled with silica or gel beads, with or without a hook-and-loop fastener strap (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

9) Face masks, single-use, of textile fabrics (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

10) Gel pads of textile materials, each with removable fabric sleeves, in the shape of hearts, circles or quadrants (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

11) Hot packs of textile material, single-use (exothermic chemical reaction) (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

12) Laparotomy sponges of cotton (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

13) Patient restraint or safety straps of textile materials, with hook-and-loop or ladder lock fasteners (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

14) Single-use blood pressure cuff sleeves of textile materials (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

15) Single-use medical masks of textile material (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

16) Single-use stethoscope covers (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

17) Woven gauze sponges of cotton in square or rectangular sizes (described in statistical reporting number 6307.90.9889)

18) Electromechanical shoe cover dispenser, of steel (described in statistical reporting number 8479.89.6500)

19) Protective articles (described in statistical reporting number 9004.90.0000)

PRIOR NOTICES GRANTING CHINA SECTION 301 EXCLUSIONS

Links to the prior notices granting China 301 exclusions appears below:

China 301 List 1

Exclusions Granted December 28, 2018

Exclusions Granted March 25, 2019 

Exclusions Granted April 18, 2019

Exclusions Granted May 14, 2019

Exclusions Granted June 4, 2019

Exclusions Granted July 9, 2019

Exclusions Granted September 20, 2019

Exclusions Granted October 2, 2019

Exclusion Granted December 17, 2019 and Amendments to Exclusions Granted July 9, 2019 and September 20, 2019

Exclusions Granted February 10, 2020

China 301 List 2

Exclusions Granted July 31, 2019 

Exclusions Granted September 20, 2019

Exclusions Granted October 2, 2019

China 301 List 3

Exclusions Granted August 7, 2019

Exclusions Granted September 20, 2019

Exclusions Granted October 28, 2019 

Exclusions Granted November 7, 2019

Exclusions Granted November 29, 2019

Exclusions Granted December 17, 2019

Exclusions Granted December 31, 2019

Exclusions Granted February 5, 2020

Exclusions Granted February 19, 2020

Exclusions Granted March 12, 2020

China 301 List 4A

Exclusions Granted March 6, 2020

Exclusions Granted March 12, 2020

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