The break the US citrus industry was waiting for is likely to come soon as China announced the tariff exemption process that will be effective March 2, 2020.
The high tariffs going into China had been a significant impediment for exports, as well as further creating an oversupply situation on the domestic market. Up until a recent 5% reduction, citrus was facing additional tariffs of 50% going into China.
The exclusion will allow importers relief on the 301 portion of the tariffs, which amounted to 35% of the additional tariff that was in place on September 1, 2019. After the exclusion process, the tariff going into China will amount to 26% plus the Value Added Tax (VAT), which is 9%.
With a major portion of the retaliatory tariffs removed for citrus and the Phase One commitment to purchase additional agricultural products, the remainder of the citrus season should see significant improvement. The major impediment to moving citrus to China will shift from the trade dispute to the coronavirus outbreak in China.