Phase One Deal Lacks Transparency, Keeps Vast Majority of Tariffs in Place

American businesses, farmers and consumers will continue to pay billions in taxes each month even with the Phase One Deal

WASHINGTON, DC January 14, 2020 – President Trump and a trade representative from China are expected to sign the Phase One trade deal tomorrow. Ahead of the signing, Americans for Free Trade, a coalition of more than 150 associations from every sector of the economy that are united in the fight against tariffs, has released the following statement from spokesperson Jonathan Gold in response to the deal and to the latest report that some details of the deal may not be disclosed to the public.

“While the Phase One Deal does demonstrate some progress, it does not do nearly enough to relieve the burden created by the trade war. The vast majority of the tariffs – which are taxes paid by Americans, and not China – will remain in place, continuing to damage the American economy and hurt American businesses, farmers, workers and consumers. On top of that, it appears the White House will not release all of the plan details, contributing to the uncertainty faced by millions of Americans who are paying billions of dollars in tariffs each month. Americans for Free Trade strongly encourages the president to release the details of this Phase One Deal and immediately begin negotiating a final deal that removes all of the tariffs.”


The Administration May Not Release Details Of The Phase One Deal Before It Is Signed. “As China and the United States prepare to sign a phase one trade deal on Wednesday, doubts remain about whether all the details of the agreement will be released publicly and whether Beijing can meet the lofty purchasing demands.” (Finbarr Bermingham and Adam Behsudi, “U.S. and China may not release full details of trade deal that they’ll sign this week,” South China Morning Post and POLITICO, 1/14/20)

“Overall, Americans Have Paid An Additional $46 Billion Since The Trade War Began In February 2018 Through November 2019.” “In November alone, Americans paid a total of $6.2 billion in tariffs, compared to about $2.8 billion in November of 2017, before the start of the trade war. This significant increase in tariffs paid by Americans is primarily driven by tariffs implemented by the Trump administration, which account for over $3.5 billion of the total in November.” (Press Release: “Trade War Has Cost Americans Additional $46 Billion, Including $3.5 Billion in November 2019 Alone,” Tariffs Hurt the Heartland Website, 1/9/20)