According to the US Department of Agriculture, tariffs on unmanufactured tobacco would be increased from 10 per cent to 35 per cent, and duties on cigarettes and cigars would be raised from 25 per cent to 50 per cent, The News & Observer reported.
The proposed tariffs on tobacco would greatly impact North Carolina’s tobacco farmers. China is North Carolina's largest market for tobacco.
The value of the state’s tobacco leaf exports to China has also decreased in recent years, The News & Observer reported. In 2017, North Carolina exported more than USD 156 million (EUR 126 million) worth of leaf tobacco to China. This figure has decreased since 2015. According to US Census data, the state exported USD 166 million worth of leaf tobacco in 2016 and more than USD 184 in 2015.
There is still time to negotiate the tariffs, according to The News & Observer. These tariffs are proposed at the moment and will not go into effect until mid-May.
Zippy Duvall, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, said China and the US should “produce an agreement that serves the interests of the world’s two largest economies,” according to the report.