December 11, 2019
Vietnam proposes tariff cuts on US imports of poultry, swine and wheat
Vietnam's Ministry of Finance have reserved certain United States agriculture products for tariff cuts after US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross called on Vietnam to reduce its trade surplus, reported Reuters.
Vietnam has benefitted from the current US-China trade war, but it is worried that it would be the next country to be affected by the US trade tariffs.
According to customs data, trade surplus between Vietnam and the US reached US$38.4 billion between January to October 2019, an increase of 33.66% compared to 2018.
The US could label Vietnam a currency manipulator due to the trade surplus, the positive account balance and because Vietnam's central bank is active from net foreign exchange purchases.
The Vietnam's Ministry of Finance statement has recommended poultry tariffs to drop from 20% to 18%, with the US hoping that it will drop to 14.5% in 2020 and abolished by 2028.
The Ministry of Finance said the tariff cuts are part of the county's commitment in the first year of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), and they will consider the US proposed rates.
Import tariffs on swine will be cut to 22% and wheat to 3%, all equal to Vietnam's CPTPP tariff cuts commitments. The US has proposed wheat tariffs to be eliminated in 2020.