ARLINGTON, VA – On Thursday, June 20, National Association of Chemical Distributors (NACD) members John Logue of Royale Pigments and Chemicals Inc. and Bert Eshaghpour of Wego Chemical Group Inc. testified before the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), highlighting the negative impact that the 25% import duties proposed under List 4 of the Section 301 tariffs on goods imported from China will have on their businesses and the chemical distribution industry as a whole.
In his testimony, Logue stated, “Section 301 tariffs will significantly harm our ability to compete in the marketplace and may eventually put us out of business. Increasing our domestic manufacturers' costs plays directly into the Chinese 2025 plan of creating a Chinese economy based on higher-value products. We may win the battle but will eventually lose the war as our higher-end manufacturers lose their competitiveness. It is illogical placing tariffs on products that have not been made in the U.S. in the last 20 years with little likelihood of future production.”
In his statement, Eshaghpour agreed. He said, “Tariffs upon the articles in List 4 would harm Wego’s customers’ ability to sell their products competitively and will drastically impact their ability to meet the demands of customers across the U.S. The Lists 2 and 3 tariffs have already impacted costs and supply chains. Additional tariffs will only add to costs of manufacturers, which will be passed on to consumers. There are no other choices or alternatives.”
NACD also filed comments with USTR expressing concern over the proposed List 4 tariffs. The association stated, “Several of our member companies have implemented hiring freezes, delayed orders and halted expansions due to the already implemented and impending tariffs. There is a significant concern among those in the industry that these tariffs could ultimately put several of our member companies out of business. Any additional tariffs would result in higher prices for American consumers, higher costs for U.S. manufacturers, decreased demand for U.S. exports, and ultimately fewer jobs for American workers. Therefore, NACD specifically recommends excluding 56 Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) codes due to their direct and certain impact upon NACD members.”
According to an analysis by John Dunham and Associates commissioned by NACD, nearly 1,050 chemical distribution jobs could be lost if tariffs on these goods are implemented and result in a loss of $543.7 million in economic output for the U.S. economy. NACD urges the USTR to rethink their approach and remove the 56 chemical product codes chemical distributors import from China from their List 4 goods targeted for tariffs.