GSP benefits kick back in in just a few days, but it will be a while until we know the full cost of tariffs paid by American companies due to expiration. According to the latest available data, American companies paid $67 million in extra taxes because Congress failed to renew GSP last year.
In the first two months of 2018, companies paid $145 million. That includes only products that claimed GSP despite the expiration. Companies have until September 19 to claim refunds manually, so actual refunds paid for January-February likely will be higher than $145 million.
GSP imports were up by 8 percent compared to February 2017. Had companies not been forced to pay them, tariff savings would have increased by 17 percent. Arizona and Utah were among the states with the biggest increases in tariffs paid because of expiration, as shown in the graphic below.
GSP expiration cost Arizona companies $422,000 in February. Potential savings were up $238,000 (130 percent) compared to one year earlier. Chemicals from India, fashion accessories and conveyor belts from Thailand, and tires from Indonesia contributed most to the increases.
GSP expiration cost Utah companies $313,000 in February. Potential savings were up $120,000 (62 percent) compared to one year earlier. Bicycles from Cambodia and travel goods and compressor pumps from the Philippines contributed most to the increases.
In addition to Arizona and Utah, companies in 20 other statessaw potential GSP savings increase by at least 20 percent, including: Alaska, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, South Dakota, Washington, and Wyoming.
Potential savings on GSP imports from Ukraine increased by 195 percent compared to February of last year. Chocolate products into Pennsylvania accounted for nearly a third of imports from Ukraine. Companies paid about $1.1 million in tariffs on plywood, led by importers in Florida.
*** REMINDER: GSP GOES BACK INTO EFFECT APRIL 22 BUT PRODUCT- AND COUNTRY-SPECIFIC BENEFITS MAY BE AT RISK AS PART OF ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW PROCESS.***
While GSP has been renewed through 2020, we encourage GSP program users to sign up for the free GSP Supporter List to receive periodic updates on such issues such as refunds and the Annual Review process.