According to new research from the Coalition for GSP, the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program saved American companies $879 million in 2020. Total imports under GSP were nearly $17 billion. Overall GSP imports and savings were down from 2019 due to both country terminations and coronavirus impacts. GSP savings started growing again in late 2020, but remain well below early-2019 levels.
However, GSP expired on January 1 and companies must now pay over $2.5 million per day in extra taxes. GSP expiration is causing immediate harm to American companies and workers. For example, a small business in New York recently reported:
Because GSP expired, we will have to let 3 employees go that were previously going to be brought from temporary to permanent with benefits. Two good paying electronics technician jobs we planned to add are now on hold as well. We are a smaller company and can’t afford $163,000 in expenses and still be able to expand. Prices will likely have to increase with risk of losing further business in a very tight market, with major competition from China.
Another company with about 200 employees across six states is paying over $80,000 per month in new tariffs, a figure that will rise to $130,000+ per month in March. It reported:
We can’t reduce orders until we design and create new products to replace the items we currently buy. We will have to pay the duties in the interim and have raised prices only where the market allows. Therefore, we will sustain a low margin and cut costs including pay to employees.
It is critical that Congress renew GSP – with refunds for tariffs paid – as soon as possible. To help the Coalition for GSP educate policymakers on who is hurt by expiration (and how), companies are strongly encouraged to: