COVID-19 Response: OIA takes action to help stimulate US economy

March 18, 2020

Calls to remove ALL punitive tariffs on imports from China

Last week, Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) joined 23 trade associations in sending a letter to Larry Kudlow, Director of the National Economic Council under President Trump urging him to take action to offset the damage to the U.S. economy as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.

Specifically, the letter urges the president to lift punitive tariffs that were imposed on products sourced from China and refund duties paid to stimulate the economy and help U.S. businesses respond to the crisis.

Outdoor companies have been severely impacted by the punitive tariffs imposed on certain U.S. imports from China. Products like backpacks, leather ski gloves, camp chairs, some camp stoves and bikes (List 3) have been hit with an additional 25 percent tariff, while some outdoor apparel, footwear and equipment (List 4A) face a 7.5 percent tariff. These higher costs and the uncertainty of when or if the punitive tariffs will be removed have hampered innovation, U.S. job growth and new business opportunities for outdoor companies.

As China and the world respond to the health and welfare of all those affected by the coronavirus, we have seen the growing economic strains of this new crisis. Like many industries, exports of outdoor products and inputs sourced from China have been impacted. In a challenging trade environment, outdoor companies must now manage this new threat to their global value chains and their ability to bring products to market.

OIA will monitor the impact of the coronavirus on the outdoor recreation economy and provide members with additional information. You can view a webinar OIA hosted on the economic impact of the coronavirus and next steps here.

In addition to the letter sent yesterday, OIA also submitted comments for the record of the House Ways and Means Committee hearing “U.S.-China Trade and Competition” outlining the impact of the U.S.-China trade war on outdoor companies and calling for the elimination of all punitive tariffs. And OIA joined a letter to the committee and another to the president organized by the Americans for Free Trade coalition also calling for the lifting of all punitive tariffs.