Along with China’s announcement of extra tariffs on $60 billion in US imports, Beijing offered a tariff exclusion process for the first time ever on Monday, said the South China Morning Post.
“It is a sign that things are probably going to be going on a little bit longer from the top down than they thought,” said a SCMP source.
The process is similar to a program that is offered in the US and allows tariff-affected firms in China to apply for an exclusion. The Chinese exclusions are a lifeline to key industries that Beijing wants to protect from the turmoil of the trade war, reported the SCMP. Given that importers must pay the extra duties themselves, offering exemptions to those that cannot afford the tariffs makes economic sense, according to analysts.
“They want to be careful not to damage the economy or important economic players that lack viable substitutes for these products. It is a sensible policy, but happens to be one that is difficult to implement and requires a lot of work,” said Jon Cowley, a senior international trade lawyer at Baker McKenzie in Hong Kong.