(Yicai Global) March 19 -- Forty-five U.S. trade associations representing some of the leading companies in the world’s largest economy urged President Donald Trump not to levy high tariffs on China, warning that such move would hurt the U.S. economy and consumers, state-run Xinhua News Agency reported.
Representing the U.S. business community, trade associations are aware that the government is conducting an investigation of China under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 and urge the administration to adopt policies and actions that are consistent with its international obligations and substantially benefit the U.S. exporters, importers and investors, rather than penalize the consumers or hurt the country’s competitiveness, they said in a letter sent to Trump yesterday.
Imposing tariffs on Chinese imports would trigger a chain reaction of negative consequences for the U.S. economy, raise costs for the U.S. firms and consumers, and hurt exports of agricultural products and services, they warned.
Levying duties on electronics, apparel and other products imported from China is the equivalent of imposing taxes on the U.S. consumers and companies, which would offset the benefit they would receive from the Trump administration’s tax reform, they said.
Imposing tariffs on components will also subject the U.S. manufacturers to more expensive key parts, disrupt existing supply chains, reduce the export competitiveness of the manufacturing sector and affect jobs, they added.
It will also affect healthcare, education and emergency service providers since they rely heavily on imported consumer electronics and other relevant products. Tariffs that may lead to lower consumption of products may also trigger stock market falls and weigh on the U.S. financial markets, they warned.
The associations urged the Trump administration not to impose tariffs on Chinese imports but to work with the business community to find effective solutions. They also hoped the government would allow industry experts to comment on its trade policies and measures, including the economic impact of any potential measures.
Trade associations which urged President Trump not to go ahead with his decision to impose tariffs include the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Retail Federation and the Information Technology Industry Council. They represent such companies as Alphabet Inc., owner of Google, Apple Inc., and Wall Mart Inc.
The Trump administration’s decision on the issue has caused widespread opposition across the business community, the U.S. media reported. If it imposes a 25 percent tariff on information and communications technology products imported from China, it would cost the U.S. economy USD332 billion over the next decade, said a research report released by the US-based Information Technology and Innovation Foundation.