On May 8, 2020, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced eight (8) new China Section 301 product exclusions for List 4A. These new product exclusions are set forth in three (3) ten-digit HTSUS classifications covering certain dental floss, motorcycle helmets, and bicycle visual signaling equipment, and five (5) new product-specific descriptions covering certain plastic pitchers for healthcare facilities, plastic patient ID wristbands, pill crushers, Bluetooth tracking devices, and wireless communication apparatus capable of receiving audio data for distribution to wireless speakers. The USTR has also made a significant technical amendment to broaden an existing List 4a product exclusion that covered certain single use textile face masks to remove the single use requirement and to add particulate facepiece respirators. These China Section 301 List 4A product exclusions are retroactive to September 1, 2019 and expire on September 1, 2020. Note the limited effective date for upcoming shipments.
The USTR has also announced certain technical amendments to six (6) previously-approved China Section 301 Lists 1 and 2 product exclusions. The two (2) List 1 technical amendments involve certain AC motors and contactors. The four (4) List 2 technical amendments relate to certain copolymers, plastic drinking straws, zener diodes, and electronic temperature monitors. Clients are urged to review carefully amendments which may include or exclude eligible products.
The product exclusions from the China Section 301 duties are available for any importer for any product that falls within the special product descriptions and enumerated ten-digit HTSUS classifications. This is true regardless of whether the importer filed the initial product exclusion request. Clients may also benefit by filing Post-Summary Corrections (PSCs) or Protests for entries covered by a product exclusion to secure refunds plus interest. Unless liquidation extensions are granted, Protests may be required for liquidated entries. It is important to identify affected entries and filing deadlines. The refund process is complicated and should be carefully considered.