US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has confirmed that Tranche 4 tariffs on goods imported from China will be cut in half from 14 February, while China has confirmed it is also halving duties on some US imports. 

The move comes as part of the ‘Phase One’ trade deal signed between the two countries on 22 January after almost two years of tensions.

The CBP notice confirms that List 4A products affected by this change, which include most garments, will see duty rates drop from 15% to 7.5% when they are entered, or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption, on or after 12:01 a.m. eastern daylight time on 14 February. The 7.5%  duty rate will be in addition to existing rates.

The announcement affects US$300bn worth of products – of which around US$31bn are textile, apparel and home textile products. 

New tariffs that were intended to start on 15 December on remaining Chinese clothing have been suspended indefinitely.

US apparel and footwear importers have said the move only brings limited benefits as punitive tariffs on 92% of the clothing shipped from China to the US are still in play. The reduced rate is applied on top of already existing tariffs that average 10.4% for woven garments and 14.4% for knitted items.

Separately, China confirmed today (6 February) it is halving tariffs from 10% to 5% on some goods exported to the US and to 2.5% from 5% on others in order to “promote the healthy and stable development of Sino-US economic and trade relations.”

Products benefitting from the move are set to include the US$19.5m worth of textile and apparel items imported from the US on which China imposed duties of 5-10% in September. The changes also come into effect on 14 February.