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Italy Will be Exempt From US Import Tariff Increase

Roberta Cutillo (February 18, 2020)
Italian products are exempt from the 25% increase in tariffs on goods imported into the US.

The revised list of the products subject to new import taxes released by the Office of the United States Trade Representative features no Italian products.

The United States finally decided not to raise tariffs by 25% on a series of mostly food sector-related products coming from several European countries including Italy, as it had threatened to do last October.

The tariff raise was intended as retaliation against European countries who were found by the World Trade Organization (WTO) to have been giving illicit subsidies to the Airbus aircraft manufacturing consortium.

The announcement was met with great shock and strong oppositions as it would brutally impact countless businesses and consumers on both sides of the Atlantic and US trade representatives have since then been in talks with their foreign counterparts in the attempt to resolve the situation.

Although the US maintains the right to update the list at any time, for the moment it appears that the biggest measure will be the increase of tariffs from 10% to 15% on Airbus vehicles imported from Europe starting March 18. Meanwhile, the World Trade Organization is set to pronounce a similar sentence regarding illicit subsidies that the US gave to American aircraft company Boeing in April.

Italian officials including the Minister of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies Teresa Bellanova and the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Luigi Di Maio expressed their satisfaction in the outcome and feel that a great threat has been dodged.

Food industry consortia, including Consorzio Parmigiano Reggiano and Consorzio Vino Chianti expressed their relief and enthusiasm even though exports of Italian products to the US had already began to drop significantly following the October announcement. The possibility of the US raising import tariffs lingers and all industry actors remain vigilant and attentive to diplomatic relations with the US.

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