- The US government has continued to collect tens of billions of dollars in additional tariffs as the trade war with China has persisted, according to new data.
- From the start of the trade war in February 2018 through the end of 2019, the Treasury Department collected $50 billion in tariffs.
- The increases came despite a recent agreement to ease a tit-for-tat trade tensions with China.
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New data shows the US government has continued to collect tens of billions of dollars in additional tariffs, despite a recent agreement to ease a tit-for-tat trade tensions with China.
The Treasury Department collected $50 billion in tariffs from the start of the trade war in February 2018 through the end of 2019, the free-trade advocacy groups Tariffs Hurt the Heartland and The Trade Partnership said Monday. In December alone, tariff revenue rose by $6.3 billion.
The increases came even after the US and China reached a phase-one trade deal, which was announced in October and finalized in January. Tariffs were kept in place on both sides, though some at lower rates, because officials plan to continue negotiations toward a broader economic agreement.
“Make no mistake — this trade war is as active as it was in December,” said Brian Kuehl, the co-executive director of Farmers for Free Trade. “The phase one deal didn’t end this trade war. American farmers and businesses need real relief now.”
While President Donald Trump asserts that China bears the burden of US tariffs, evidence shows they are paid almost entirely by American businesses and consumers.
In its latest budget statement, the Treasury Department said it collected roughly $6.4 billion in customs duties. Tariff estimates could vary because they are recorded by multiple departments and subject to revisions.
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Tariffs Hurt the Heartland and The Trade Partnership use Census-calculated duties data because they contain the necessary details for analyzing sector and state trends, the groups said.
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