U.S. to impose tariffs on Samsung, LG washing machines

美, 삼성•LG 등 외국산 세탁기•태양광에 세이프가드 발동

The U.S. government has decided to slap big tariffs on washing machines made by Samsung and LG, another step in President Trump's "America First" agenda.
U.S. appliance maker Whirlpool had asked for the so-called "safeguard" measures, saying the Korean manufacturers were evading tariffs by moving their facilities around the world.
For their part, Samsung and LG have said the tariff will hurt consumers by raising prices and restricting choice.
Kim Mok-yeon has this story.
The U.S. Trade Representative's office announced a list of safeguard measures that the U.S. plans to impose on imports of Samsung and LG-made washing machines and solar panels.
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said on Tuesday that President Trump has made his final decision on the issue, adding that Trump's decision clearly reflects his willingness to defend American workers and businesses.
With the latest announcement, a twenty-percent tariff will be applied on imports of washing-machines under 1.2 million units, and a 50 percent tariff on imports exceeding the quota in the first year, with tariffs falling by 2 and 5 percent per year respectively for the following two years.
On imports of products in the solar industry, the tariff rate will be set at 30 percent, and will be reduced to a 15 percent tariff rate over the next four years, with the first two-point-five gigawatts being exempt from the tariff.
The new safeguard measures, which come 16 years after the U.S. imposed tariffs on imported steel products in 2002, are expected to deal a big blow to Korea's manufacturing firms.
Following the news, South Korea's trade ministry vowed to file a petition to the World Trade Organization over Washington's safeguard measures.
Trade Minister Kim Hyun-jong said that the Korean government will work to defend the nation's interests by claiming its rights guaranteed under the WTO agreement.
Samsung and LG, two of Korea's major electronics manufacturers have been exporting a combined 1 billion dollars a year of large residential washing machines to the U.S., with Samsung holding 16 percent, and LG 13 percent, of the U.S. washing machine market share.

Kim Mok-yeon, Arirang News.

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