Frequently Asked Questions about aluminum and Steel Products Importation

Updated: Aug 27, 2019


Lately, when I engaged in conversation about real estate topic with friends, I will say, " the market price will go up." And people ask me why. Then I joke about it, " You know that our President Donald Trump had imposed a 25% tariff on imports of steel and 10% tariff on imports of aluminum since March 2018. This will raise the price of newly constructed home, thus bring up the average housing price! "


Whether agreed or disagreed, it has been a fact since Donald Trump designated section 232 in the name of national security. There are few changes occurred during the past months, and I try to summarize the key points here for your reference,



1. Could you tell me which countries in the world are covered under section 232 ?


Steel: As of May 20, 2019: All countries of origin except Argentina, Australia, Brazil,

Canada, Mexico, and South Korea

Aluminum: As of May 20, 2019: All countries of origin except Argentina, Australia, Canada, and Mexico.

However, Argentina, Brazil, and South Korea are subject to absolute Quota, so Mexico and Canada ( which are U.S good friends) and Australia will have no hassle to import steel and aluminum.




2. If I imported steel and aluminum from Generalized System Preference (GSP) countries , will I also pay 25% or 10% rate too?


Yes, it is applied. GSP or free trade agreement or African Growth and Opportunity Act will not entitle you the special treatment on aluminum and steel products



3. If the shipment values under USD 800, will I be excluded from the additional tariff?


Unfortunately no. Yet section 321 declares that CBP shall clear free of duties and fees for merchandise having a fair market value under USD 800, for aluminum and steel products, it does not apply





4. Can I claim drawback on the steel and aluminum products import?


Unfortunately no




5. Which tariff codes are being affected by section 232 exactly?


For steel articles classified in the HTS as: 7206.10 through 7216.50, 7216.99 through 7301.10, 7302.10, 7302.40 through 7302.90, and 7304.10 through 7306.90 importers must claim HTS number 9903.80.01 (25% ad valorem additional duty for steel mill products).


Aluminum articles defined in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) as unwrought aluminum (HTS 7601), aluminum bars, rods, and profiles (HTS 7604); aluminum wire (HTS 7605); aluminum plate, sheet, strip, and foil (flat-rolled products) (HTS 7606 and 7607); aluminum tubes and pipes and tube and pipe fitting (HTS 7608 and 7609); and aluminum castings and forgings (HTS 7616.99.51.60 and 7616.99.51.70), For products covered by the order importers must also claim HTS number 9903.85.01 (10% ad valorem additional duty for aluminum products).


*The aluminum order does not apply to products made with aluminum or parts of downstream products.




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