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World NewsApple backs exemptions for Trump tariffs on Apple Watches, Mac parts

Apple backs exemptions for Trump tariffs on Apple Watches, Mac parts

Flextronics International Apple manufacturing unit workers work on Apple Mac Pro laptop meeting in Austin, TX, November 20, 2019.

Tom Brenner | Reuters

Apple filed eight public feedback supporting non permanent waivers for tariffs on Apple Watch and Mac Pro parts on Wednesday, in accordance with the U.S. Trade Representative’s website.

The filings are a public step in a course of that might reinstate a government-granted exclusion on 7.5% tariffs on Apple Watch imports and 25% tariffs on Mac Pro elements. Apple’s watch and parts are topic to tariffs as a result of they’re imported from China. Apple’s most essential product, the iPhone, has not been topic to tariffs.

The transfer is a reminder that corporations are nonetheless battling tariffs levied in the course of the Trump administration amid a commerce conflict with China, particularly after most exclusions had been allowed to expire in late 2020 or early this year.

Finished Apple Watches and some Mac Pro parts are among the many imports affected. The Apple Watch is a core product for Apple that bought greater than 30 million items final yr, in accordance with Counterpoint Research estimates, whereas the Mac Pro is a high-end laptop that prices $6,000 or extra.

The U.S. Trade Representative said in in October that it might contemplate reinstating some tariff exclusions on a case-by-case foundation, significantly if the product can solely be sourced from China. The USTR requested corporations who supported exclusions to reply questions together with whether or not the merchandise could possibly be manufactured within the United States or different international nations that aren’t China.

The remaining manufacturing of Apple’s merchandise takes place virtually solely in mainland China, though Apple has made efforts to diversify its manufacturing base.

In its filing about Apple Watch tariffs, Apple stated that the product is a “U.S.-designed smartwatch” and that it ought to obtain an exclusion as a result of it’s extensively utilized by shoppers for cell connectivity and well being purposes.

Apple stated that the watch is “currently available from third countries in limited quantities,” which means that the corporate has examined manufacturing exterior of China.

Apple additionally backs exclusions on seven elements within the Mac Pro, together with trackpads, mice, energy provides and circuit boards. In its filings, Apple stated that the elements are usually not out there from sources exterior of China, and are difficult and made to order.

The Mac Pro is the one laptop Apple assembles within the United States. A contractor manufactures the Mac Pro desktop laptop exterior of Austin, Texas. Apple CEO Tim Cook took then-president Donald Trump on a tour of the power in 2019.

Apple’s eight feedback had been amongst over 1700 entries filed to the USTR since October. Other know-how corporations together with Google, Intel, and Sonos additionally weighted in on tariff exclusions, in accordance with the USTR web site.

An Apple consultant declined to remark.

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