The US has proposed a list of products from the EU that could become the subject of tariffs, one of which is coffee.
Joshua Morey, an Associate at law firm Kelley Drye in Washington, explained that, in April, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) initiated an investigation to enforce US rights stemming from a World Trade Organization (WTO) ruling concerning EU provision of subsidies on the manufacture of large civil aircraft.
In the notice initiating that investigation, USTR proposed imposing additional ad valorem duties of up to 100 per cent on certain imports from the EU. The USTR also provided a list of proposed tariff headings covering an estimated US$21 billion in trade value that might be subject to increased duties.
In May 2019, USTR solicited comments and held a hearing concerning the list of products to be subject to retaliatory duties and the level of duties to be applied, among other issues. A number of commenters urged USTR to consider retaliatory duties on additional products not included on the April list.
Mr Morey said that pursuant to these comments, USTR has proposed a second list of products covering an estimated trade value of US$4 billion. The new list covers a variety of food items, including coffee, meat, cheese, olives, fruit, pasta, waffles, and whiskey.
USTR is seeking public comment concerning the new list of products, the level of ad valorem duties that should be applied, and whether duties on products covered by the new list might have an adverse effect upon US stakeholders.