Not There Yet” on Lifting China Tariffs, President Says
President Biden is holding out the possibility of lifting some of the Section 301 tariffs on imports from China but said in a Jan. 19 press conference that “we’re not there yet.” Biden acknowledged pressure from U.S. business groups to lifting the tariffs, which have cost importers billions of dollars since they were first imposed in 2018. But he said he wants to see that China is “meeting … more of their commitments” under the Phase 1 trade deal the two countries concluded in 2020 before considering such action. Recent press reports suggest U.S. concerns focus largely on the fact that China has fallen about 40 percent short of the $200 billion in additional U.S. goods it pledged to purchase over the past two years, though the deal set out a number of other objectives as well. Biden said U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai is “working on that right now” but gave no further details. Tai also has been tight-lipped, saying only that she is continuing to discuss the matter both internally and with her Chinese counterparts.