Biden Continues Exempting China-Made Medical Supplies from U.S. Tariffs

Alex Wong/NOEL CELIS/AFP via Getty Images
Alex Wong/NOEL CELIS/AFP via Getty Images

President Joe Biden’s administration will continue exempting a number of China-made medical products from United States tariffs even as the Chinese coronavirus crisis exposed the nation’s over-reliance on foreign countries for vital supplies.

Late last week, the Biden administration announced that certain medical products made in China would continue to be exempted from U.S. tariffs. The tariff exclusion would have ended at the end of May but now they will be in place until at least the end of November.

The announcement means the Biden administration will allow China-made surgical gloves, face masks, hospital gowns, and medical devices to be sold in the U.S. market, free of charge.

Decades-long U.S. free trade with China, which continues gutting America’s working and middle class communities, has ensured the American economy relies on China and many other foreign countries for key supplies in medicine, tech, minerals, and other industries.

For instance, in 2020, the U.S. imported nearly $300 million worth of hospital and sanitary supplies made of paper — about 51 percent of which was made in China. Likewise, in 2020, the U.S. imported $470 million worth of rubber surgical gloves. More than 70 percent of those gloves arrived from Thailand and Malaysia while over 15 percent were imported from China.

Also in 2020, the U.S. imported over $7 million worth of clothing and accessories made of paper, including paper face masks that were used in the midst of the pandemic and continue to be used by medical professionals in hospital settings. Nearly 60 percent of those imports were made in China.

As Breitbart News reported, in the midst of the pandemic, small-t0-medium American manufacturers said they were not only not being awarded federal contracts to produce these vital medical supplies but that they were not even being contacted.

Though Biden has touted his infrastructure bill as a boost to American manufacturing, the legislation includes huge carve-outs where federal agencies can bypass “Buy American” rules for any infrastructure project.

From 2001 to 2018, U.S. free trade with China eliminated 3.7 million American jobs from the economy — 2.8 million of which were lost in American manufacturing. During that same period, at least 50,000 American manufacturing plants closed down.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at Follow him on Twitter here


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