Jan 04 2021
The Honorable Ron Johnson United States Senate Washington, DC 20510
Dear Senator Johnson:
Thank you for your letter regarding the Section 301 tariff exclusion extension process. I understand your concerns about the effects of the tariff actions on Wisconsin businesses and farmers.
In your letter, you asked USTR to provide "the specific justification for each denial of an exclusion extension request" by Wisconsin companies. I would like to clarify that the exclusion extension process, unlike the exclusion process, does not involve granting or denying individual “requests.” Rather, the extension process determines whether to extend particular exclusions based on evaluation of the factors set out in the relevant Federal Register notice, public comments, and advice from advisory committees concerning extension of the pertinent exclusion.
As we have discussed with your staff over the past few months, the factors generally considered in the extension process, as set out in the relevant Federal Register notices, include: (1) whether, despite the first imposition of the additional duties, the particular product remains available only from China, and (2) whether the imposition of additional duties on the products covered by the exclusion will result in severe economic harm to the commenter or other U.S. interests.
I appreciate your continued support for USTR’s efforts to address China’s unfair trade practices. USTR Congressional Affairs staff will keep your office apprised of any further developments on this matter, and please do not hesitate to contact me if you would like to discuss this or other issues in the future.
Robert E. Lighthizer