On June 20th, 2018, the US Trade Representative’s office filed an official action in the Section 301 investigation of the acts, policies, and practices of the Government of China related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation. This notice was filed specifically regarding 10% tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods. These wide-ranging tariffs cover goods from televisions to transceivers and are expected to include many optical networking products offered by nearly every networking device manufacturer.
The official action is slated to be handled by the Section 301 Committee, convening August 30th to hear rebuttal arguments. In response to China’s introducing 25% tariffs on 333 goods (including fiber optic cables) this week, there is increasing speculation that the US tariffs on Chinese goods may increase to 25% as well. With approval by the committee, the impact to IT budgets would likely be felt as early as October of this year.
While we don’t know the entire scope of the impact, know that we are watching the situation very closely and will be prepared to manage the outcome. Be sure to check back as we continue to monitor the status and provide frequent updates.