AFT Sends Letter to USTR Calling for Holistic, Transparent Tariff Review

WASHINGTON, D.C., (March 29, 2022) — Today, Americans for Free Trade (AFT), a broad coalition of American businesses, trade organizations, and workers united against tariffs sent a letter to United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai expressing strong support for a fully transparent review of the Section 301 tariffs on products from China which includes a comprehensive economic assessment of the tariffs’ impact on the American economy.

“In your upcoming testimony before Congress regarding the 2022 Trade Policy Agenda, we urge you to share USTR’s plans for reviewing the tariffs, including timing and opportunities for stakeholder input,” Americans for Free Trade wrote. “We believe the review presents an important opportunity to assess the Trump Administration’s tariffs and determine whether the Biden-Harris Administration will continue them as part of its China trade policy.”

In addition to calling for a fully transparent review which includes input from all stakeholders – including those who pay the tariffs – the letter calls on USTR to extend its review to all four tariff lists in order to provide a more holistic assessment of the tariffs’ impact on American businesses, workers, farmers, and consumers.

176 trade associations signed on to the letter. The full text of the letter may be found here and below.

March 29, 2022

The Honorable Katherine Tai 
United States Trade Representative 
600 Seventeenth Street, N.W. 
Washington, D.C. 20508

RE:      Section 301 China Tariffs Review Process

Dear Ambassador Tai:

            We write today to express our strong support for a fully transparent review of the Section 301 tariffs on products from China, including a comprehensive economic assessment of the tariffs’ impact on American businesses, workers, farmers, and consumers. In your upcoming testimony before Congress regarding the 2022 Trade Policy Agenda, we urge you to share USTR’s plans for reviewing the tariffs, including timing and opportunities for stakeholder input. We believe the review presents an important opportunity to assess the Trump Administration’s tariffs and determine whether the Biden-Harris Administration will continue them as part of its China trade policy. 

            Our companies and associations joined together to form Americans for Free Trade in 2018. Our coalition represents every part of the U.S. economy including manufacturers, farmers and agribusinesses, retailers, technology companies, service suppliers, natural gas and oil companies, renewable energy companies, importers, exporters, and other supply chain stakeholders. Collectively, we employ tens of millions of Americans through our vast supply chains.

            American importers, including members of our coalition, have been assessed close to $130 billion in tariffs since President Trump first imposed tariffs on products from China nearly four years ago. As you know, List 1 of those tariffs is set to expire in July unless USTR receives a petition for a continuation of the tariffs, which we understand is almost certain to occur. Such a request would trigger a review process under the statute, requiring USTR to examine the effectiveness of the tariffs in achieving their objectives and other actions that could be taken, as well as the effects of such actions on the U.S. economy, including consumers. 

            While USTR would only be required to conduct this review with respect to List 1, we urge USTR to include all four tariff lists in its review. A single review for all four tariff lists would create administrative efficiencies for USTR and American companies. It would also permit a more holistic assessment of whether the tariffs achieved their stated objectives and provide a full picture of the impact the tariffs have had to the U.S. economy, as well as American businesses, workers, and consumers. It would also give USTR the opportunity to consider whether the 301 tariffs represent the best path forward considering U.S. companies continue to face many of the same challenges with respect to trade with China today as they did when the tariffs were first imposed.

            Further, it is essential that the review process be fully transparent and include a public comment period and public hearings to ensure that the Administration gives all stakeholders – including stakeholders who pay the tariffs –the opportunity to provide input. A review that does not include the American businesses, workers, farmers, and consumers burdened by the tariffs would be inconsistent with the commitments USTR has made in its Transparency Principles, congressional testimony, and the 2022 Trade Policy Agenda and 2021 Annual Report regarding public outreach, engagement, and transparency. 

            We look forward to hearing your testimony at the upcoming congressional hearings. We commit to working with you on a trade policy agenda that tackles the unprecedented economic challenges facing American families, workers, and businesses.


Accessories Council

ACT | The App Association 

Agriculture Transportation Coalition (AgTC)

ALMA, International (Association of Loudspeaker Manufacturing and Acoustics)

American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA)

American Association of Exporters and Importers (AAEI)

American Association of Port Authorities

American Bakers Association

American Bridal & Prom Industry Association (ABPIA)

American Chemistry Council

American Clean Power Association 

American Coatings Association, Inc. (ACA)

American Down and Feather Council

American Fly Fishing Trade Association

American Home Furnishings Alliance

American Lighting Association

American Petroleum Institute

American Pyrotechnics Association

American Rental Association

American Seed Trade Association

American Specialty Toy Retailing Association

American Trucking Association

Arizona Technology Council

Arkansas Grocers and Retail Merchants Association

Association For Creative Industries

Association for PRINT Technologies

Association of American Publishers 

Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) 

Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers

Auto Care Association

Beer Institute

BSA | The Software Alliance

Business Alliance for Customs Modernization

California Bottled Water Association

California Retailers Association

Can Manufacturers Institute 

Central States Bottled Water Association

Chemical Industry Council of Delaware (CICD) 

Coalition of New England Companies for Trade (CONECT)

Coalition of Services Industries (CSI)

Colorado Retail Council

Columbia River Customs Brokers and Forwarders Assn.

Computer & Communications Industry Association (CCIA)

Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA)

Consumer Brands Association

Consumer Technology Association

Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA)

CropLife America

Customs Brokers & Freight Forwarders Assn. of Washington State

Customs Brokers & Freight Forwarders of Northern California

Distilled Spirits Council of the United States

Electronic Transactions Association 

Energy Workforce & Technology Council

Experiential Designers and Producers Association 

Fashion Accessories Shippers Association (FASA)

Fashion Jewelry & Accessories Trade Association

Flexible Packaging Association

Florida Ports Council

Florida Retail Federation

Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America (FDRA)

Fragrance Creators Association

Game Manufacturers Association

Gemini Shippers Association

Georgia Retailers

Global Chamber® 

Global Cold Chain Alliance 

Greeting Card Association

Halloween Industry Association

Home Fashion Products Association

Home Furnishings Association

Household and Commercial Products Association

Idaho Retailers Association

Illinois Retail Merchants Association

Independent Office Products & Furniture Dealers Association (IOPFDA)

Indiana Retail Council

Information Technology Industry Council (ITI)

International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA)

International Bottled Water Association (IBWA)

International Foodservice Distributors Association

International Housewares Association

International Warehouse and Logistics Association

International Wood Products Association

ISSA – The Worldwide Cleaning Industry Association

Jeweler’s Vigilance Committee

Juice Products Association (JPA)

Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association

Leather and Hide Council of America

Licensing Industry Merchandisers’ Association

Los Angeles Customs Brokers and Freight Forwarders Assn.

Louisiana Retailers Association

Maine Grocers & Food Producers Association

Maine Lobster Dealers’ Association

Maritime Exchange for the Delaware River and Bay

Maryland Retailers Association

Michigan Chemistry Council

Michigan Retailers Association

Mid America Bottled Water Association

Minnesota Retailers Association

Missouri Retailers Association

Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association

Motorcycle Industry Council

NAPIM (National Association of Printing Ink Manufacturers)

National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS)

National Association of Chemical Distributors (NACD) 

National Association of Foreign-Trade Zones (NAFTZ)

National Association of Home Builders

National Association of Music Merchants

National Association of Trailer Manufacturers (NATM)

National Confectioners Association

National Council of Chain Restaurants

National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA)

National Fisheries Institute

National Foreign Trade Council

National Grocers Association

National Lumber and Building Material Dealers Association 

National Marine Manufacturers Association

National Restaurant Association

National Retail Federation

National Ski & Snowboard Retailers Association

National Sporting Goods Association

Natural Products Association

New Jersey Retail Merchants Association

North American Association of Food Equipment 

Manufacturers (NAFEM)

North American Association of Uniform Manufacturers and Distributors (NAUMD)

North Carolina Retail Merchants Association

Northwest Bottled Water Association

Ohio Council of Retail Merchants

Outdoor Industry Association

Pacific Coast Council of Customs Brokers and 

Freight Forwarders Assns. Inc.

Pennsylvania Retailers’ Association


Personal Care Products Council

Pet Food Institute

Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council

Plumbing Manufacturers International 

Power Tool Institute (PTI)

Promotional Products Association International

Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association 

Retail Association of Maine

Retail Council of New York State

Retail Industry Leaders Association

Retailers Association of Massachusetts

RISE (Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment)

RV Industry Association

San Diego Customs Brokers and Forwarders Assn.


Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA)

Snowsports Industries America

Society of Chemical Manufacturers & Affiliates

Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA)

South Atlantic Bottled Water Association

South Dakota Retailers Association

Southeast Bottled Water Association

Specialty Equipment Market Association

Specialty Vehicle Institute of America 

Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA)


Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA)

Texas Retailers Association

Texas Water Infrastructure Network 

The Airforwarders Association

The Fertilizer Institute

The Hardwood Federation

The Toy Association

Travel Goods Association

Truck & Engine Manufacturers Association (EMA)

United States Council for International Business

United States Fashion Industry Association

US Global Value Chain Coalition

US-China Business Council

Vinyl Institute

Virginia Retail Merchants Association

Virginia-DC District Export Council (VA-DC DEC)

Washington Retail Association

Window and Door Manufacturers Association

World Pet Association, Inc. (WPA)