The World Trade Organization’s (WTO) Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) has agreed to establish panels for examining steel and aluminum tariffs imposed by the U.S., following requests from seven member countries, including China. Meanwhile, President Trump plans to meet one-on-one with Chinese President Xi Jinping to discuss trade between the two nations, amid the G20 summit, which begins Friday in Buenos Aires. President Trump told reporters at “The Wall Street Journal” that, despite the meeting, he is “highly unlikely” to fulfill the Chinese government’s request to hold off on further tariff increases planned for January.

WTO Update

The DSB also agreed to four U.S. requests to establish panels for examining countermeasures imposed by China, Canada, the European Union and Mexico on U.S. imports, in response to tariffs on steel and aluminum. The DSB will also establish a panel to examine Chinese measures which U.S. officials say discriminate against foreign intellectual property rights holders in China.

China, the EU, Canada, Mexico, Norway, Russia and Turkey submitted second requests for panels to challenge the U.S.’s decision to impose an additional customs duty of 10 percent on aluminum imports and 25 percent on certain steel imports. Initial requests were blocked by the U.S. at a DSB meeting on October 29, 2018, as were the original U.S. requests, according to the WTO.

“The seven members reiterated their belief that the U.S. measures, allegedly taken for national security reasons, were, in their content and substance, safeguard measures taken to protect the U.S. steel and aluminum industries from the economic effects of imports,” reads a statement from the WTO.

Meeting with China

On September 24, 2018, a 10 percent tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods went into effect, with an increase to 25 percent slated for January 1, 2019.

The list includes:

  • Stainless steel doors, windows and their frames, and thresholds for doors
  • Iron or steel (other than stainless) doors, windows and their frames, and thresholds for doors
  • Wooden windows, French windows and their frames
  • French doors of wood
  • Doors of wood, other than French doors
  • Leaded glass windows and the like; multicellular or foam glass in blocks, panels, plates, shells or similar forms

According to information published by “The Wall Street Journal,” President Trump suggested that he might impose tariffs on the remaining Chinese imports not currently subject to duties if the upcoming negotiations with China don’t produce a favorable outcome for the U.S.

“The only deal would be China has to open up their country to competition from the United States,” he said in an interview. “As far as other countries are concerned, that’s up to them.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *