Trump OKs safeguard tariffs on imported washers

President Donald Trump    Kevin Lamarque  Reuters

President Donald Trump Kevin Lamarque Reuters

Abt counts LG among its top washing machine vendors, after Whirlpool, General Electric and Samsung.

"This announcement caps almost a decade of litigation and will result in new manufacturing jobs in Ohio, Kentucky, South Carolina, and Tennessee", Whirlpool Chairman Jeff M. Fettig said in a statement.

The expected price hike of LG washing machines made outside the US will likely be no more than $50, as most of the tariff will be borne by the manufacturers and not the consumers.

Anticipating such a move, LG has been building a washer factory in Tennessee that will begin production as early as the end of 2018, while Samsung recently began washer production in SC.

The Trump administration announced Monday it would impose a 20 percent tariff on the first 1.2 million washing machines imported in year one, with that number jumping to 50 percent for all subsequent imports.

Robert Lighthizer addresses the media to close the second round of NAFTA talks involving the United States Mexico and Canada at Secretary of Economy headquarters in Mexico City Mexico
Robert Lighthizer Thomson Reuters

"This is a victory for American workers and consumers alike", Whirlpool Chairman Jeff Fettig said in a press release Monday.

On the other hand, Whirlpool promised to add jobs and increase investments in manufacturing and innovation in the wake of the tariff. Now Samsung is saying that production and supplies at its new USA -based plant will continue without any problems, Korea Herald has learned.

Trump ignored a recommendation from the ITC to exclude South Korean-produced washers from LG from the tariffs, as prior antidumping duties on these machines have been dropped. Then, when the China plants were sanctioned, they already had moved production to Vietnam and Thailand.

LG criticized Trump's decision and expressed its disappointment over the new restrictions. "Every time President Trump imposes a tariff or a quota or some kind of import barrier the result of that is going to be higher prices for American consumer".

Tariffs on the company will be 20% on the first 1.2 million machines imported into the USA, while anything beyond that will be levied with a 50% charge. The tax rates will decline to 16 percent and 40 percent, respectively, in the third year. Whirlpool sought protection under a US "safeguard" law that allows tariffs to be imposed regardless of their country of origin.

Latest News