That has toymakers spooked and warning that tariffs would be devastating to companies and consumers, who would see price spikes on their Barbie dolls and play clothing come Christmas.
“While we agree that China needs to abide by the trading rules that protect U.S. companies, tariffs are resulting in significant harm to the U.S. toy industry. Proposing direct tariffs on toys and games will be devastating.” — Written request to testify from Rebecca Mond, the Toy Association
Jewelry and accessories
High-end products could become (more) unaffordable
“Chinese jewelry and raw material suppliers have been valued and necessary partners in developing a robust and growing U.S. jewelry industry. With high-quality manufacturing, unique raw materials, expertise and manufacturing infrastructure — none of which exists in the United States for our goods — China is a vital source for our industry.” — Written request to testify from Timothy D. Matthews, Jewelry Television
China is a major supplier of jewelry, along with other accessories like watches, scarves and sunglasses. Many American producers shifted production to China years ago to take advantage of cheaper labor and materials, enabling them to sell cheap costume jewelry, along with affordable, high-quality pieces. Jewelry and other accessory companies say a 25 percent tariff would make their products unaffordable and could result in job losses at American-owned production facilities in China.
While some are trying to shift production to other countries, like Vietnam, they warn that it is time consuming, disruptive and not an easy fix for entrenched supply chains.
“Even if alternative manufacturing sources were available, it would take an estimated nine to 18-plus months to certify and approve new suppliers. Our members have longstanding partnerships with their China factories who have developed specific skills to manufacture these products. Sourcing outside of China would make the items cost prohibitive for the majority of U.S. retail customers.” — Written testimony of Karen Giberson, Accessories Council
Getting products here would become more expensive
“Simply put, the cost of imposing tariffs on gantry cranes poses a significant risk to continued economic growth for the communities of Virginia and beyond as well as the national economy by threatening a major East Coast port project. Putting a 25 percent duty on these high-cost, low-tech pieces of equipment would do nothing to address China’s egregious violations of intellectual property and forced technology transfers.” — Written request to testify from John F. Reinhart, Virginia Port Authority
Even the products that are used to get Chinese imports from ship to shore are at risk of being taxed. The majority of Chinese imports arrive at ports in the United States via large container ships. Those containers are removed from the ships by large cranes, which also happen to come from China.
This next round of tariffs would place a 25 percent tariff on those cranes, prompting concern at ports that the increase could drive up costs, slow down delivery and result in layoffs or reduced wages.
Public institutions and low-income families could be hurt
“Currently, the vast majority of books we print in China are children’s picture books. Printers in China have unrivaled capacity and expertise to print these books. The addition of a 25 percent tariff on the cost of producing books will send shock waves through the children’s book market..” — Written request to testify from Madeline McIntosh, Penguin Random House
Public librarians, booksellers and publishers warn that the next round of tariffs would hit all books, but particularly children’s picture books. Many of those books are published in China, making them affordable for consumers, including public libraries.
Kim Zablud, director of public services for the District of Columbia Public Library, warned in a letter that a 25 percent tariff would have “an outsized impact on low-income families that depend on public libraries for developmentally appropriate books that promote early literacy and reading at grade level.”