August at-a-glance … taxes, tariffs & trade

House expected to address “China bill” post recess

Washington insiders expect the U.S. House of Representatives to begin work on its own package of bills to address U.S. competitive with China when it returns following the August recess. In June, the Senate passed the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act, a $200 million legislative package intended to fuel technology and economic competition with China.

Among other things, the Senate bill includes the Trade Act of 2021 that installs an inspector general at the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), extends expired exclusions to Section 301 tariffs on imported Chinese goods, and restarts and reforms a tariff-exclusion process. It also includes a provision to reinstate duty reductions under the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB) that expired Jan. 1. The MTB temporarily reduces or suspends the import tariffs paid on specific U.S. imports based on approved petitions submitted for each product by importing companies.

It’s likely that the Ensuring American Global Leadership and Engagement (EAGLE) Act introduced to renew American leadership abroad will anchor the House bill. Representatives also are expected to propose boosting funding for the Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Science Foundation to help make U.S. firms more competitive with China.