Dozens of manufacturing companies testified about how Trump's trade war with China could affect them — here's what they said

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The Trump administration has prepared to place import tariffs on all Chinese products entering the country. In addition to a $200 billion round of duties expected to be announced soon, Trump on Friday said another $267 billion worth of imports could subsequently be targeted „on short notice.“

Hundreds of company and industry representatives testified before trade officials in Washington last month about how the next round of duties could affect them. 

The hearings lasted more than 45 hours, with witnesses allowed to speak for five minutes each. A large number of individuals came from the manufacturing industry. Here’s what some of them had to say, drawn from US Trade Representative transcripts

SEE ALSO: ‚If this tariff takes effect, we are out of business‘: Small companies warn of widespread layoffs and shutdowns if Trump doesn’t back down from a trade war with China

MEC Aerial Work Platforms

Kerman, California

„Tariffs will cause layoffs, lives will be devastated, the hope and optimism that comes from meaningful work will be gone. … As a result, workers who have those jobs will have little or no prospects for the future. Please don’t do this. The cost to our workers in Kerman is far too high.“ -John McCann

Ice Air

Mount Vernon, New York

„We’re an American success story that until now has relied on the benefit of open markets. These tariffs will be financially disastrous to Ice Air and to everybody that depends on us.“ -Mo Siegel

Blue Ribbon Products

Fuquay Varina, North Carolina

„I am here today, along with my father in-law and son, who are also with the business, because we truly believe that our family business may not survive this tax.“ -Wendell Howerton

Annjoy Imports

Scottsdale, Arizona

„Every company in my industry will stop shipping immediately as the margins are already razor thin and the tariff would cause instant financial destruction. The majority of us will need to file for bankruptcy. And there will be no shopping bags in malls across America come the busiest time of year.“  -Adam Finkel

American Keg Company

Pottstown, Pennsylvania

„301 tariffs would be effective in eliminating China’s bad practices while having no economic harm to US interests. It will effectively allow the US to bring more jobs back and spur growth by allowing companies in the US to be competitive making stainless steel kegs.“ -Paul Czachor

American Lawn Mower Company

Indianapolis, Indiana

„We agree with the administration’s primary goal with regards to tariff. However, believing that tariffs on our products, electric lawn and garden tools, will help USA manufacturing or USA jobs, is like believing you can help a dog that was just run over by a car, by putting your car in reverse and running over the dog backwards.“ -Michael Kersey

Snow Joe

Carlstadt, New Jersey

„With the threat of so many tariffs looming over my business cost pressures are making it increasingly difficult to remain competitive and continue to create high-quality, well-paying American jobs.“ -Joseph Cohen

Rheem Manufacturing Company

Atlanta, Georgia

„These proposed actions would assist in eliminating China’s unfair acts, policies, and practices. And they would not cause disproportionate economic harm to US interests, including small or medium sized businesses and consumers.“ -Mike Branson

BISSEL Homecare

Grand Rapids, Michigan

„We were planning to add 100 jobs in Grand Rapids in the next year, but the threat of these tariffs has put the brakes on those plans, as we wait to see how the tariffs will affect our business. If the goal of this administration is to add jobs to the US economy, the result of these proposed tariffs at BISSELL couldn’t be more counterproductive.“ -William Brennan

NewAge Casting

Sugar Land, Texas

„So, to start, the ad valorem tariff tactics will benefit no one, especially in the midst of a tit-for-tat trade war. … Our country is built on competition, and competition is what is required for our country to thrive. With no competition, two things happen. Quality goes down and price goes up.“ -Bikram Singh

Alta Forest Products

Chehalis, Washington

„American companies and workers in our industry are thus competing on an uneven playing field. By imposing a tariff you will preserve family-wage jobs in our communities.“ -Mike Pedersen

Star Pipe Products

Houston, Texas

„It has the potential to affect our ability to maintain to our current employment levels in our U.S. operations and, also, our capacity to continue to invest in our foundry in Oklahoma, which would impair our efforts to create new jobs. And while we understand and appreciate the government’s intent to protect U.S. industries from truly unfair trade practices, this action is using a sledgehammer where a scalpel is needed.“ -Rishi Bhutada

Skyline Steel

Parsippany, New Jersey

„Skyline is pleased that the U.S. Government will impose an additional duty on certain Chinese-origin products to help address these unfair and illegal practices.“ -Robert Braden

Kenroy Home

Jacksonville, Florida

„I am not sure how Kenroy is going to handle the immediate $1.75 million in tariff costs … But so far, Kenroy Home has already suspended new product development as new products with less certain sales potential will be overburdened by these tariffs. This has resulted in curtailed hiring and has already forced selected employee cuts.“ -John Mandelker

Element Electronics

Eden Prairie, Minnesota

„Quite frankly, I can’t find any way to interpret what the administration is proposing other than it’s a mistake or unintended result and will promptly be fixed through this hearing process, because the alternative is that the government has targeted Element’s factory for closure, and that makes no sense at all.“ -David Baer

Huntingdon Fiberglass Products

Huntingdon, Pennsylvania

„Unfortunately, no U.S. suppliers have shown interest in manufacturing these materials for us as doing so would require a significant allocation of time and expense. As a result of our dependence on Chinese supply, the financial consequences of the proposed tariffs would be grave for Huntingdon.“ -Jason Takac

BTIC-America Corporation

Houston, Texas

„These tariffs will not create additional jobs nor they make the U.S. more competitive in this market. They will not spur additional domestic growth nor will it improve competition. These tariffs would merely punish a single foreign supplier all at the expense of U.S. businesses and consumers.“ –Jon Tilley

Commercial Metals Company

Irving, Texas

„We cannot continue to allow Chinese industrial plans, technology transfer policies, and cyber enabled theft, and illegal government subsidies cause further injury to US manufacturers.“ -Billy Milligand

The Wooster Brush Company

Wooster, Ohio

„In other words, the tariffs will punish American brush manufacturers like Wooster that are trying to achieve the administration’s goal of investing in US manufacturing and jobs, but will encourage the foreign production of finished brushes.“ -Bill Fagert

Sea Eagle Boats

Jefferson, New York

„The proposed tariffs will not create a US manufacturing industry because domestic production is simply too expensive for a recreational product intended for the middle class family. … Moving production out of China is difficult and time consuming.“ -John Hoge


Tamaqua, Pennsylvania

„Any additional tariff would result in significant financial strain on our US-based business, threaten jobs and call into question future investment.“ -Lisa Scheller

Niche Chem Industries

Fair Lawn, New Jersey

„The additional tariffs, if imposed, would result in severe economic harm to our company and our customers, potentially creating supply shortages and raising the costs on consumer products purchased by Americans.“ -Deborah Hardesty

Ball Chain Manufacturing Company

Mt Vernon, New York

„Under these current conditions we’re in jeopardy of having to cease US manufacturing operations. In a perfect world, there would be no need for tariffs, every player would compete fairly. Unfortunately, this is not the case, particularly with respect to China and South Korea.“ -Valentine Taubner, Jr. 

Nation Ford Chemical

Fort Mill, South Carolina

„The rising … cost of these materials by the initially proposed 10 percent will cause a severe hardship to our company. A tariff of 25 percent will likely create a situation where we would not be cost competitive on a global basis.“ -Phillip McCarter

Royce Associates

East Rutherford, New Jersey

„…in the late ’70s, I was here to testify to maintain certain tariffs on certain chemicals that we felt there was unfair trade going on at that point in time. Today though, I am here, and I feel that I’m not testifying just for Royce but more on behalf of the thousands of US textile workers, the US military, and the blue collar professionals who the administration has pledged support for. We believe that the proposed tariffs on vat dyes will cause the unintended consequence of causing harm to these groups of people, rather than helping them.“ -Wylie Royce

Daikin America

Orangeburg, New York

„Let me be very direct. Daikin America’s parent has made investments in the United States based on the fact that the US is a country that is generally friendly to business and allows the market to determine cost. Current investments and additional investments will be affected by government actions that undermine our ability to obtain sufficient inputs at world market prices.“ -Ritchie Straff


Pomona, California

„We have already seen a decrease in the demand for 2019 just based on the suggestion of a tariff.“ -Cynthia Gardenhire


Holland, Ohio

„I understand you want to beat China over the head with these tariffs to get them to trade more fairly. But in our case, you’re putting at risk the jobs, efforts and future of people that have spent 20 years building a small American manufacturing company.“ -Robert DiSanza

Leather Specialty Company

Naples, Florida

„These additional duties will help our USA manufacturing and encourage other companies to expand, startup again, and start hiring Americans.“ -Michael Korchmar

Diamond Innovations

Worthington, Ohio

„If a tariff is imposed on industrial diamonds, my company will be at a significant commercial disadvantage to our offshore competitors who would not have to bear the burden of the tariff. I may have to reduce our US workforce by nearly 100 jobs in order to stay competitive.“ -Michael Korchmar

See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Source: Business insider

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