Skip to main content
Article |
| International Trade

New US tariffs on Chinese goods applicable to antiquarian material

The US-China Trade War has now widened to include the antiquarian trade.
Published on 21 Aug. 2019
US China tariffs

ILAB therefore needs to draw attention to the imposition of a tariff of 10% on the retail price of all books, manuscripts, photographs, collections, maps, art work, ephemera etc. which were made, or even partly made, in China on import into the United States. This tariff will be in place from September 1st, 2019 on. 

It does not matter which country the items are being sent from, the tariff applies to any item that was at some time in its history a product of China.  

This tariff is much wider in scope that it might first appear. For example, it is our understanding that it would be placed on the following, as well as many other instances: 

*Any book regardless of date or value that was published or printed in China - including modern firsts which were printed in China or early missionary imprints.

*A Japanese photograph album with just a photo or two of China (likely to be a pro-rata tariff but we have yet to get clarity on this)

*A library or collection of documents where one or more items had originally come from China. 

This will have implications for not just for booksellers in the United States but a large number of other ILAB booksellers too. It will for many add some complexity and expense to exhibiting at fairs and of course sending orders to the States. ILAB has been advised that this tariff and how it may be applied is complex. ILAB will monitor the situation and issue updates as appropriate.

Further recommended reading - The Art Newspaper, 14 August 2019

  • share