April 02, 2020

WASHINGTON – Today, ITI urged the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) to lift Section 301 tariffs on more than 60 product categories to enable U.S. healthcare providers, companies, and consumers to access goods necessary to stem the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. In its comments, ITI noted that Section 301 tariffs still apply to many key information and communications technology (ICT) products with essential medical applications, and their removal would help alleviate the strain on the U.S. healthcare system.

“The ICT sector plays a crucial role in facilitating a comprehensive U.S. response to the COVID-19 crisis, from manufacturing critical healthcare-related devices and components, to supporting social distancing policies while providing products and services for telework, remote learning and tele-health arrangements,” ITI wrote. “More broadly, the products and services the tech sector develops maintain and power the U.S. economy, including the U.S. healthcare system, and enable the remote connectivity on which a significant segment of the economy currently relies. We appreciate the opportunity to provide input as USTR considers further modification of tariffs imposed under Section 301 with a view to enabling U.S. healthcare providers, companies and consumers to access the goods necessary to stem the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak.”

Critical products and components ITI highlighted in its comments include:

  • In-vitro diagnostic test instruments, which have recently been granted Emergency Authorization by the FDA because they are the fastest diagnostic tools for COVID-19.
  • Scanners (e.g., CT/PET scanners) that also help to detect areas of infection in the body.
  • Patient monitoring devices that track patients’ vitals.
  • Monofilaments, printers, and related printer parts, which are used for 3D printing and production of ventilators and other medical equipment.
  • Integrated circuits, which are foundational to a number of critical medical equipment for radiology, infusion, intubation, and more.
  • Board mount pressure sensors go into ventilators, oxygen concentrators, and dialysis machines.

Read ITI’s full submission here.

Public Policy Tags: Trade & Investment, Coronavirus Response