CXO

Could Trump's China tariffs make IT more expensive for businesses?

The tariffs could affect $50-$60 billion worth of goods and increase trade tensions.

Building a slide deck, pitch, or presentation? Here are the big takeaways:
  • US President Donald Trump's China tariff proclamation, signed on March 22, is predicted to impact annual imports of high-tech goods.
  • Increased tariffs on Chinese technology products could raise prices and hurt IT budgets, while also prompting manufacturers to bring their operations back to the US.

The Trump administration is set to release a list of Chinese goods that will be subject to the recently-signed tariff proclamation, and technology products are in the crosshairs.

As reported by Reuters, the tariffs will affect $50-$60 billion worth of goods and will likely not come into play for another few months. However, the full list will need to be unveiled by this coming Friday, April 6, the report noted.

At the time President Trump initially signed the China tariff proclamation on March 22, the office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) published its investigative report into China's trade activities relative to Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974. The USTR alleges that Chinese firms engaged in "uneconomic" transfer of US intellectual property to their own companies, Reuters reported.

SEE: Hardware purchasing task list (Tech Pro Research)

China denied the allegations of inappropriate technology transfer and claimed it would retaliate with tariffs of its own, Reuters noted. This has led to fears of a growing trade war between the two countries. Some 45 trade associations have come out against the tariffs.

While this has clear political ramifications, it also affects everyday consumers and professionals. Consumers and IT pros alike could see higher technology product prices, which could seriously impact IT budgets in the enterprise as well.

At the time of the initial signing, President Trump spoke of how US factories were closing, and he believed they were starting to come back. And, as noted by TechCrunch, the tariffs could encourage Silicon Valley firms to move their manufacturing out of China into another country, or possibly back into the US.

While the potential impact on the tech industry is looming, it's important to remember that the tariff list isn't out yet and won't be finalized until the end of this week. But if it does favor the tech industry, as expected, it could mean much higher prices for tech products for quite some time.

Also see

ithardware.jpg
Image: iStockphoto/aquatarkus

About Conner Forrest

Conner Forrest is a Senior Editor for TechRepublic. He covers enterprise technology and is interested in the convergence of tech and culture.

Editor's Picks

Free Newsletters, In your Inbox