Press Release | September 11, 2019

CTA Urges Congress to Intervene in U.S.-China Trade War

Bronwyn Flores Jennifer Drogus
The following statement is attributed to Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, Consumer Technology Association (CTA)®, regarding the increasing cost of Section 301 tariffs on American businesses and consumers:

“Increasing tariffs are giving the stock markets whiplash, and consumers are getting worried – just last month consumer sentiment dropped almost 10 percentage points. The president has overstepped his power on trade, and our nation’s businesses and families are footing the bill – it’s time for Congress to step up for American businesses and consumers. With less than 40 legislative days left this year, we urge Congress to hold a hearing on the Reclaiming Congressional Trade Authority Act of 2019, which would reassert Congress’ role in trade policy and protect Americans from this seemingly endless trade war. Congress has the power to review and should use its limited time left to investigate the scope and intent of the president’s misguided trade policy.  
"Our Constitution gives Congress clear authority on trade and tax matters and Congress has granted the executive branch limited power on tariff policy – but that authority has been taken too far. Congress exacerbated the Great Depression of the 1930s with its protectionist Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act. Instead of repeating history, Congress can help prevent another horrible economic mistake by moving forward with the Reclaiming Congressional Trade Authority Act.”
The U.S. consumer technology industry paid $1.9 billion in tariffs in July – five times higher than it paid in July 2018, despite a 38% decrease in imports, according to new data from CTA, compiled and analyzed by The Trade Partnership. The July cost includes $143 million in tariffs on 5G-related products – including smartphones, routers, gateways and servers – a critical emerging technology that faced virtually no tariffs prior to the trade war. Since July 2018, Section 301 tariffs on China have cost the industry almost $12 billion, including $1.2 billion on 5G-related products alone.