In a letter to the U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, the Auto Care Association recently urged USTR to consider challenges the auto care industry is facing when evaluating requests to extend Section 301 tariff exclusions.
In addition to sourcing challenges outside of China, it takes several years to “qualify a new supplier, redevelop and retool individual parts, and undergo a validation and approval process, in addition to the tremendous monetary startup investment required.”
Any efforts to evaluate alternate sources and modify supply chains have been delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, which is having a “substantial impact on the business performance, investments, staffing and demand for products and services for companies across the aftermarket, regardless of size or business type.”
“Extending Section 301 tariff exclusions is an effective way to provide immediate relief to businesses already struggling to stay afloat as a result of the current pandemic. It will allow companies access to capital to pay employees and suppliers, improve cash flow and reserves, and continue efforts to fully develop alternate sources. Most importantly, it will ensure the U.S. automotive aftermarket is prepared to support the U.S. economy as it reopens.”
To read the full letter, click here.