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Tariffs Against China Counter-Productive; Will Hurt U.S. Tech Manufacturing

Arlington, VA (May 29, 2018) –– The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA), the leading association representing the manufacturers and suppliers of high-tech communications networks, today issued the following statement following the White House announcement that the United States will impose a 25 percent tariff on $50 billion of goods imported from China.

“This is a highly counter-productive move that will make it more expensive to produce advanced telecom products here in the United States,” said TIA’s Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Cinnamon Rogers. “The Administration has said it wants to strengthen the American manufacturing base. But the higher costs associated with tariffs stand to weaken U.S. exports and impair our country’s competitiveness.”

The Administration said today that it will issue the final list of covered imports on June 15, but a draft tariff list released earlier included many components that are used to make leading-edge telecom equipment goods in the U.S.

“In a highly competitive ICT industry, raising the cost of inputs could create a perverse incentive for firms to outsource advanced manufacturing from the United States,” Rogers said. “And the geographic impact of tariffs will be broad. According to input gathered from TIA members, the duties will impact technology manufacturing in states including Alabama, Maryland, Florida, Texas, California, South Carolina and Illinois.”

Rogers added, “In addition, there are particular risks in imposing duties on ICT-related inputs, because a wide variety of traditional American industries – from farming to manufacturing to banking – have come to rely on digital infrastructure as an essential productivity tool. Assuming U.S. firms had to raise prices as a result of increased component costs, the resulting higher price tags for internet and other telecom products would needlessly raise the cost of connectivity for a broad array of U.S. business as well as consumers.”

Contact

Ashley Simmons, 703-907-7704, asimmons@tiaonline.org

About TIA

The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) is at the center of a vibrant ecosystem of companies delivering technologies and services to revolutionize the way the world communicates. TIA represents and convenes the manufacturers and suppliers, network operators, distributors, service enablers and system integrators of global communications technologies across its Technology, Government Affairs, Standards, and Business Performance communities. Tackling unique challenges faced by the ICT industry, TIA shapes the solutions that enable high-speed networks and accelerates connectivity across all markets. Learn more at tiaonline.org.

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