Proposed tariffs on Chinese art will have a negative impact on the U.S. market

 Chang Hsüan, Women making textile, Indian ink and color on silk, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Wikimedia Commons.

Chang Hsüan, Women making textile, Indian ink and color on silk, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Wikimedia Commons.

The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) has included artwork, antiques and historical/archeological collections in the proposed 10% retaliatory tariff on an additional $200 billion in Chinese goods.  

Artworks and antiques can be found at the end of the list of items covered by the tariff. 

As noted in the Cultural Property News article, Proposed Tariffs on Chinese Art Will Expand China’s Art Monopoly (July 19, 2018), almost all of the  artwork from China from the Paleolithic through the Tang period is already covered by U.S. import restrictions. 

From the article:

The restrictions are claimed by China to be for the protection of ancient archaeological sites, but in fact, they reinforce China’s monopoly on Chinese art. Global Heritage Alliance Executive Director Peter Tompa states, “A tariff will only drive more Chinese artifacts back to China, which is exactly what the State Department is doing with its import restrictions.”

These actions will certainly have a negative impact on the U.S. art trade, while benefitting the Chinese government, who have requested import restrictions on art and antiques, not punishing them as intended. 

Please read the full article on the Cultural Property News website for more information and insight on this issue.  

What can you do? Make your voice heard! 

The USTR is requesting comments on the proposed list of imports. Comments must be received by July 27, 2018. 

The USTR prefers electronic submissions made through the Federal eRulemaking Portal.

Insert the docket number USTR-2018-0026 in the Search bar. A new window will open. Click the “Comment Now” button to submit your comment.

There are also instructions on how to submit paper testimony on the request for comments page.