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UK firms facing extra £8.8m tariff bill in US trade dispute


UK firms are facing an extra £8.8m tariff bill on a range of products when exporting to the US from 18 October as part of a longstanding trade dispute over subsidies granted to Boeing and Airbus.

The list of goods hit with a 25% tariff includes 17 fashion and textile product lines spanning jumpers made of wool, cashmere, cotton or manmade fibres, as well as women’s anoraks, men’s suits, pyjamas, swimwear, blankets and bed linen.

The 25% tariff will be in addition to the normal duties which apply on these products. UKFT understands the tariffs will only impact UK-made products

The US government unveiled the list of goods to face new duties on Wednesday after the World Trade Organisation ruled it could impose tariffs worth $7.5bn (£6.1bn) to remedy subsidies given to Airbus.

The European Union has lodged a list with the WTO of products from the US on which the EU want to impose extra tariffs. The WTO expected to rule on that in the new year.

It has been confirmed that these tariffs will apply even if the UK leaves the European Union with or without a deal. It has not yet been confirmed how this may affect goods currently on the water.

Adam Mansell, CEO of UKFT, said: “These new measures will affect £35m of exports and companies will be facing an extra £8.8m in tariffs, which will hit a number of companies extremely hard. The UK is the only country facing tariffs on our fashion and textile exports so if these tariffs do come in our companies will be at a massive disadvantage to our European competitors.

“We will be urging our government to underwrite the cost of these tariffs that are the result of a dispute that has nothing to do with our industry.”

The full list of products are outlined below.

Products sold to the USA