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LIVE UPDATES: US-China trade war escalates

Many sectors of the industry are in a state of shock over the China-US trade battle, and they're scrambling to measure its impact.

Wednesday, July 18, 5:13 am PST

US lobster firm struggles as tariffs bite

New Hampshire-based lobster producer Little Bay Lobster Company said it is trying to avoid layoffs after being hit by an additional 25 percent tariff from China as a bitter trade war between the Asian nation and the US escalates.

Click here to read the full story.

--John Evans


Tuesday, July 17, 2:46 pm PST

Study: Chinese seafood industry could fare worse than US in trade war

The Chinese seafood industry is likely to be the biggest loser under Trump's latest round of tariffs, according to Rabobank analysts.

But other countries could greatly benefit.

Click here to read the full story.


Friday, July 13, 5.05 am PST

US shrimp producers support new China tariffs

Louisiana and Alabama-based shrimp producers are supporting US President Donald Trump's planned tariffs.

It could help domestic shrimp in what some describe an oversaturated market, they said.

Some industry members go a step further and are calling for additional tariffs to be implemented on shrimp exports from other countries, such as India.

Click here to read the full story.

--Rachel Sapin


Thursday, July 12, 11.04 pm PST

Latest China tariffs likely to hit Alaska seafood

Michael Kohan, technical program director at ASMI, said some of the new tariffs could affect Alaska seafood, reports KTOO.

“The US is going to impose 10 percent tariff on imports from China, which could include Alaska seafood product that has gone to China for reprocessing and then is being imported into the US for the domestic market,” he said.

In June, China announced it will increase tariffs on US seafood products in response to those set earlier by the US. China added 25 percent to the existing tariffs July 6.

After the decision, industry analysts said seafood reprocessed in China and then exported back to the US would be exempt from the tariffs. The new announcement looks like it changes that, representing a major shift, reports KTOO.

China is the largest trading partner for Alaska seafood and is a major reprocessing sector for the US. Alaska companies export about $1 billion (€857.6 million) worth of seafood to China annually.

Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute officials say Alaska companies export approximately $1 billion worth of Alaska seafood to China annually.

Pollock, salmon, and Pacific cod make up the bulk of that and they're included on the new tariff list.

The latest proposed tariffs would go into effect in September.


Thursday, July 12, 3.29 pm PST

ASMI on China tariffs: We will survive

"As an industry familiar with fluctuating wild harvests and an ever changing global market place, we will continue to adapt."

That was what Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI) told IntraFish in a statement in response to news that US could impose trade tariffs of up to 10 percent on Chinese seafood imports.

"The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute is discouraged by the recent response from the office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) that further impedes trade of Alaska seafood products with China," ASMI said.

--Rachel Sapin


Wednesday, July 11, 8.05 am PST

NFI: China, US governments drive 'misguided strategy'

John Connelly, president of the National Fisheries Institute (NFI), condemned the "misguided strategy" by both the US and Chinese governments, which places "unwarranted tariffs on the other’s seafood products" that "will only hurt workers and consumers in their own countries."

He said the NFI is calling on policy makers in both countries to "demonstrate real leadership by sitting down and negotiating before lasting and unnecessary damage is done.

"American jobs at processing plants throughout the country are at risk of losing raw material from China. That means American workers suffer.

"Grocery stores and restaurants thrive when they offer the public options. Tariffs ultimately are taxes on American consumers that limit choice," Connelly said in a statement.

Meanwhile, consumers in China will also be "deprived" of Maine lobsters, squid from New Jersey and California, and cod, pollock, and salmon from Alaska.

"The Dr Seuss story of Two Zax who stand forever facing each other without compromise is not where this dispute should end," Connelly said.


Wednesday, July 11, 5.30 am PST

NOAA: 'It's chaotic'

An official with National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries described the situation to IntraFish as "chaotic" Wednesday morning.

The new tariff list will be subject to public comment for 60 days, which means it is "hard to say what is happening, much less how it will be implemented."

--Elisabeth Fischer


Wednesday, July 11, 3.30 am PST

China threatens retaliatory measures, WTO lawsuit

China vowed to take “necessary countermeasures” after the United States late on Tuesday said it will slap 10 percent tariffs on an extra $200 billion (€170.5 billion) worth of Chinese imports.

We eat our own

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Officials called the move “totally unacceptable,” and said they were “shocked” by the actions of the Trump administration.

“We express our solemn protest,” a statement by the ministry read. “The behavior of the US is hurting China, hurting the world, and hurting itself. This irrational behavior is unpopular.”

To safeguard China’s “core interests” the government will respond with countermeasures. In addition, it will “immediately” file an additional lawsuit against the US with the World Trade Organization (WTO).

“We call on the international community to work together to safeguard the rules of free trade,” the ministry said.


Tuesday, July 10, 9.44 pm PST

Trade war escalates

Cod, shrimp, salmon and tilapia products are among an extensive list of Chinese seafood imports facing import tariffs of up to 10 percent as the Trump administration follows through on threats to step up its trade dispute with Beijing.

The additional 10 percent tariff is being imposed on Chinese goods worth a total of $200 billion (€170.5 billion).

Click here to read the full story.

--John Evans


Friday, July 6, 4.05 am PST

Chinese importers, US exporters brace for new seafood tariffs

Importers of US seafood in China are bracing for the impact of the new tariffs imposed by the government, reports Reuters.

Gao Han, a salesman at Beijing Chaoxing Seafood Company, which sells US lobsters, said that his firm was stocking up before the tariffs hit, but that if the issue persisted they’d have to raise prices or shift supply.

Click here to read the full story.


Tuesday, June 19, 2.10 pm PST

NOAA official: Fishmeal, reprocessed product will dodge China tariffs

Fish imported into China for reprocessing and re-export are not, at the moment, subject to the additional 25 percent tariff imposed by China on Friday on a wide range of US seafood exports, according to an email, obtained by IntraFish, from John Henderschedt, director of the Office of International Affairs and Seafood Inspection for NOAA Fisheries, to executives in the US seafood industry.

Click here to read the full story.

--John Fiorillo


Tuesday, June 19, 1.20 am PST

Trump threatens more tariffs on Chinese goods

US President Donald Trump late on Monday ordered the US Trade Representative (USTR) to expand the list of Chinese goods to be slapped with tariffs by another $200 billion (€172.6 billion) worth of additional Chinese goods.

These yet unknown products could see a 10 percent tariff and will be made "to address China's harmful trade policies and practices."

Robert Lighthizer, US trade representative, said he supports Trump's action.

"The initial tariffs that the president asked us to put in place were proportionate and responsive to forced technology transfer and intellectual property theft by the Chinese," Lighthizer said. "It is very unfortunate that instead of eliminating these unfair trading practices China said that it intends to impose unjustified tariffs targeting US workers, farmers, ranchers, and businesses.

"At the president’s direction, USTR is preparing the proposed tariffs to offset China’s action," he said.

The Trump administration said Friday that it will impose a 25 percent tariff on $50 billion of Chinese exports. China retaliated almost immediately, outlining its own tariffs on US goods worth $50 billion.


Monday, June 18, 3:20 pm PST

Alaskan seafood fearing impact from tariffs

Alaska lawmakers and industry leaders are voicing concerns over China's latest tariff proposal, citing the country as Alaska's No. 1 importer of its seafood.

Garrett Evridge, an Alaska-based fishery analyst with the McDowell Group, told IntraFish the list of items China is looking to tax could put $1 billion worth of Alaska's exports on the line.

--Rachel Sapin


Monday, June 18, 2:01 pm PST

Maine lobster sector braces for impact

Like much of the US seafood export industry, the Maine lobster sector is scrambling to understand the potential impact of the retaliatory tariffs the Chinese government announced Friday, which included a huge list of species, including lobster.

Read more about the lobster sector's next move here.

--Drew Cherry


Monday, June 18, 1:10 pm PST

China's major online market fears long-term trade war

A lengthy trade war between the United States and China would hurt American brands, Richard Liu, founder and CEO of, China's second-largest e-commerce company, told CBNC Monday.

Chinese consumers have a preference for buying imported goods, he said, providing opportunities for US-branded goods. But a prolonged trade war could send Chinese consumers toward other non-American brands if US goods became less available.


Monday, June 18, 12:30 pm PST

Geoduck suppliers 'freaking out'

Taylor Shellfish, a leading shellfish supplier in the United States, is anticipating that up to half of its geoduck clam production could be impacted by a new round of retaliatory 25 percent tariffs China slapped on hundreds of US products on Friday.

An estimated 6 million pounds of wild and farmed geoduck are produced annually in Washington state, said Taylor's Bill Dewey, and producers are “freaking out” over the expanded trade war with China.

Click here to read more.

--John Fiorillo


Monday, June 18 9:30 am PST

Alaska lawmakers jump into trade fray

In a written statement, Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski has urged US President Donald Trump to reach a trade policy agreement with China that protects the export market.

Click here to read more.


Friday, June 15 11:30 am PST

China-US trade war explodes

As many feared, the US seafood industry is now in line to become collateral damage in a simmering trade war between the United States and China.

Friday was filled with punches and counter punches.

The day started with the Trump administration announcing plans to slap a 25 percent tariff on up to $50 billion (€43 billion) of Chinese goods.

Shrimp, crayfish and other seafood imports were not, however, part of Trump's expanded tariff list, despite pressure from US shrimp and crayfish producers and elected officials to include the items in the list of of more than 1,100 products..

China reacted quickly to the US tariff strike, promising to impose its own massive new round of tariffs on over 500 US exports, including dozens of seafood products such as salmon and lobster.

Interactive: Here are the biggest losers in the US-China seafood trade battle

Read more

Tariffs of 25 percent are scheduled to begin July 6, the Chinese government said.

Beijing is imposing the tariffs in two steps as is the Trump administration.

On July 6, China will levy duties on $34 billion (€29.3 billion) of US products, covering 545 categories ranging from soybeans, pork, chicken, seafood to sport-utility vehicles and electric vehicles.

The National Fisheries Institute (NFI) on Friday said it was deeply disappointed by the retaliatory tariffs by China and the Trump administration's misguided policy.

"There is no connection between the products targeted by the US and the tariffs Beijing plans to impose on exported American seafood," said NFI President John Connelly. "It is Maine lobstermen, the men and women on boats in Alaska and families harvesting and processing seafood in the Pacific Northwest who will feel the brunt of the administration’s misguided policy."

In a statement, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) said the US will impose its first set of tariffs on 818 items worth about $34 billion (€29.3 billion) on July 6.

Separate measures affecting 284 products worth about $16 billion (€13.8 billion) could take effect following a review and public comment process.

In May, the US Southern Shrimp Alliance supported a letter written in April by Senator John Kennedy asking US President Donald Trump to add Chinese crawfish and shrimp to the list of tariffs.

In response, groups representing seafood processors released a letter sent to the USTR office, asking the government to refrain from targeting Chinese seafood products.

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