The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) has issued a Federal Register notice excluding certain List/Tranche 4 products (imports from China with an annual trade value of $300 billion) from China Section 301 tariffs. The exemptions cover three 10-digit Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) subheadings and five specially-prepared product descriptions, which cover 27 separately submitted exclusion requests. Three of the product-specific exclusions are related to hospital/medical products involved in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The excluded HTS subheading are: (1) 3306.20.0000 – Preparations for oral or dental hygiene, including denture fixative pastes and powders; yarn used to clean between the teeth (dental floss), in individual retail packages: Yarn used to clean between the teeth (dental floss); (2) 6506.10.6030 – Other headgear, whether or not lined or trimmed: Safety headgear: Other – Motorcycle helmets; and (3) 8512.10.4000 – Electrical lighting or signaling equipment (excluding articles of heading 8539), windshield wipers, defrosters and demisters, of a kind used for cycles or motor vehicles; parts thereof: Lighting or visual signaling equipment of a kind used on bicycles: Visual signaling equipment.

The exclusions with specially-prepared product descriptions include but are not limited to: tumblers or disposable graduated liners for plastic pitchers of a type used in healthcare facilities; certain disposable identification wristbands of plastics, designed to be worn by patients during medical procedures; certain manually operated pill or tablet crushers of plastics for capturing and storing the resulting powders; certain tracking devices designed to be attached to other devices for Bluetooth connections; and certain wireless communication apparatus for receiving audio data to be played on wireless speakers.

These exclusions will apply from September 1, 2019, through September 1, 2020. Each exclusion is governed by the scope of the HTS heading and the product description appearing in the annex of the exclusion notice; it is not governed by the product description set out in any particular exclusion request. U.S. Customs and Border Protection will soon issue instructions on entry guidance and implementation. The USTR will continue to issue determinations on pending requests on a periodic basis.

An exclusion can apply to any product that fits within a description provided in the annex of the Federal Register notice, regardless of which company submitted the original request. Please contact us to discuss whether we can assist in determining if your product might fit within one of these exclusions.