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RILA: Tariffs will impact American consumers, workers

A leading retail association issued a stern warning about the impact of tariffs on American consumers and workers.

The Retail Industry Leaders Association said that American families and workers will be most impacted by the barrage of tariffs imposed on consumer products from China, and U.S. exports to the European Union, Canada, Mexico, and China. RILA issued its statement on Friday, July 6, the same day that a 25% tariff on $34 billion worth of Chinese imports to the U.S. went into effect. Chinese authorities retaliated with, as they had previously warned, equivalent tariffs on $34 billion worth of imported U.S. goods, ranging from vehicles to soybeans, beef and other agricultural products.

The U.S. tariff list includes:

  • 25% tariff covering $34 billion in U.S. exports to China;

  • 25% tariff covering $34 billion in imports from China;

  • 10%-25% tariff covering $12.5 billion in U.S. exports to Canada;

  • 10%-25% tariff covering $3 billion in U.S. exports to Mexico; and

  • 10%-25% tariff covering $3.4 billion in U.S. exports to the European Union.

“There is no longer a ‘threat’ of a global trade war — the battle has begun,” said Hun Quach, VP of international trade for RILA. “These tariffs are officially being imposed on products sold by American businesses and consumed by American families. Americans are caught in the crosshairs of the Administration’s three-front trade war, and they will be the ones paying the price. The recent onslaught of tariffs will jeopardize manufacturing and agriculture jobs in the United States while driving up prices on household items.

Quach noted that retailers support a level playing field for America on the global stage, but “punishing American families and the millions of American workers whose jobs are supported by trade is not the way to strengthen our trading relationships.”

“This tranche of tariffs on both exports and imports threatens our nation’s prosperity, and will imperil millions of jobs if allowed to persist,” she said. “We continue to encourage the Administration to focus its trade negotiations on solutions and shield American families from the barrage of tariffs coming from all directions.”
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