Americans for Free Trade, a coalition connecting business associations that are opposed to tariffs, sent a letter to President Trump this week calling on him to postpone the tariff increases scheduled to take effect September 1. PPAI, as part of the coalition, is one of more than 160 organizations that signed the letter, which points out how the increases are occurring in the middle of the holiday shipping season and will raise prices for consumers. Copies of the letter were also sent to three cabinet secretaries, the U.S. Trade Representative, the administrator of the Small Business Administration and the director of the National Economic Council.

Beginning September 1, Americans for Free Trade’s analysis shows that roughly $112 billion in goods will be hit by 15-percent tariffs, including products ranging from apparel and footwear to televisions and Christmas decorations. Most apparel products (92 percent), footwear (52.5 percent) and home textile products (68.4 percent) from “List 4” will be subject to tariffs on the September 1 round, along with televisions and Christmas decorations. Additional 15-percent tariffs targeting $160 billion in imports will take effect December 15.

“These tariff rate increases—some starting as early as Sunday—come at the worst possible time, right in the middle of the busy holiday shipping period,” the letter states. “U.S. consumers are driving the growth of the U.S. economy. Let’s ensure consumer confidence remains high and economic prosperity continues for the American families we serve and the American workers we employ every day.”

It adds, “Because many of our industrial inputs are still sourced in China, these new tariffs will act as a tax on U.S. manufacturers and U.S. farmers, whose costs will now increase. And because these tariffs were announced with little warning, it is impossible for U.S. importers to share the burden with supply-chain partners in China or shift their production to other countries. The full adverse impact of these tariff increases will be felt entirely in the United States and could represent one of the largest tax increases in American history.”

PPAI’s upcoming Product Responsibility Summit, to be held on September 15-17 in Alexandria, Virginia, will include a panel to address the many issues businesses need to consider should tariffs drive them to seek new sources for product manufacturing, including the regulatory climate of the country, logistics, known human rights issues, availability of raw materials and more. All sessions are industry-focused with limited seating. Click here for more information and to register.