Nike and Adidas have joined dozens of other companies in signing a letter that urges the United States president to end his trade war with China as it can hurt customers immensely.
Over 170 footwear firms warned Donald Trump that the current political feud with the Asian country may have a “catastrophic” effect on consumers as well even jeopardize the future of certain businesses and their workers. As reported by the BBC, tensions between the two countries escalated last week when Trump decided to increase import tariffs from 10 to 25 percent on about $200 billion worth of Chinese goods coming into the U.S. after Washington and Beijing could not reach a trade deal.
And now, major footwear companies, including Converse, Dr. Martens, and Clarks, say that the decision to raise levies means regular working-class Americans will suffer the most.
“Adding a 25% tax increase on top of these tariffs would mean some working American families could pay a nearly 100% duty on their shoes. This is unfathomable. It is time to bring this trade war to an end,” their letter read.
At the moment, the average tariff on footwear coming from China into the United States is 11.3 percent. However, the firms claim it can be as high as 67.5 percent in some cases. This essentially means several brands could become extremely more expensive in the near future, especially considering about 70 percent of all shoes sold in the U.S. come from China and only 1.04 percent is produced in the country, according to data from the U.S. Department of Commerce/FDRA and as reported by the BBC.
— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) May 22, 2019
Nonetheless, President Trump’s stance on the issue is a rather strict one. Taking to Twitter earlier this month, he told companies that they should simply move their businesses to the United States if they wished to avoid the higher tariffs.
“China buys MUCH less from us than we buy from them, by almost 500 Billion Dollars, so we are in a fantastic position. Make your product at home in the USA and there is no Tariff. You can also buy from a non-Tariffed country instead of China,” he suggested.
"The more time I spend listening in rural communities, the clearer it becomes: China isn't paying the price for this reckless trade war. We are," writes Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke for @CNNOpinion https://t.co/tqou7wbxhl
— CNN (@CNN) May 21, 2019
Retailers clapped back by explaining that it takes “years of planning” to make sourcing decisions, and that “companies cannot simply move factories to adjust to these changes.” And it’s not just the footwear industry that is suffering from the new changes. Last week, Chinese tech giant Huawei was blacklisted by the current administration, forbidding them from buying American technology without approval from the government, as reported by The Inquisitr. The move saw Google forced to cut ties with Huawei, with the latter no longer having access to Android updates.