More than 600 American companies and trade associations, including Adventure Media and Events — parent company of the Toy Book — signed a letter delivered to the White House in hopes of sending a message to President Donald Trump: Tariffs hurt the heartland.
The letter comes as the Office of the United States Trade Representative readies for hearings to consider 25% tariffs on more than $300 billion in goods imported from China — including toys. The full contents of the letter can be found below:
June 13, 2019
President Donald J. Trump
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC 20500
Dear Mr. President,
On behalf of the undersigned companies below and the millions of workers we employ, we are writing regarding the ongoing trade dispute between the U.S. and China. We agree that our trading partners must abide by global trade rules, and we support the administration’s efforts to address unfair trading practices, including intellectual property violations, forced technology transfer and more. We encourage the administration to negotiate a strong deal with China that addresses longstanding structural issues, improves U.S. global competitiveness and eliminates tariffs. We believe this goal can be achieved without taxing Americans.
We remain concerned about the escalation of tit-for-tat tariffs. We know firsthand that the additional tariffs will have a significant, negative and long-term impact on American businesses, farmers, families and the U.S. economy. Broadly applied tariffs are not an effective tool to change China’s unfair trade practices. Tariffs are taxes paid directly by U.S. companies, including those listed below— not China. According to Trade Partnership Worldwide LLC, 25 percent tariffs on an additional $300 billion in imports (combined with the impact of already implemented tariffs and retaliation) would result in the loss of more than 2 million U.S. jobs, add more than $2,000 in costs for the average American family of four and reduce the value of U.S. GDP by 1.0 percent. Furthermore, we have seen repeatedly that tariff increases and uncertainty around these trade negotiations have created turmoil in the markets, threatening our historic economic growth.
Mr. President, we support your efforts to hold our trading partners accountable, level the playing field for American businesses and forge enforceable trade agreements. We urge your administration to get back to the negotiating table while working with our allies to develop global, enforceable solutions. An escalated trade war is not in the country’s best interest, and both sides will lose. We are counting on you to force a positive resolution that removes the current tariffs, fosters American competitiveness, grows our economy and protects our workers and customers.
CC: Ambassador Robert Lighthizer, United States Trade Representative
Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Department of the Treasury
Secretary Wilbur Ross, Department of Commerce
Secretary Sonny Perdue, Department of Agriculture Director Larry Kudlow, National Economic Council
Among the companies signing the letter are The Toy Association, Aeromax Industries, Bachmann Trains, Basic Fun!, Beverly Hills Teddy Bear, Hape International, Imperial Toy, Learning Resources, Loog Guitars, Odyssey Toys, PlayMonster, Rubie’s Costume Co., Thames & Kosmos, The Learning Journey, TOMY International, Trek Bicycle Corp, VTech Toys, and Wicked Cool Toys, alongside retailers such as Five Below, Go! Retail Group, JCPenney, JOANN Stores, Macy’s, Target, and Walmart.
Next week, The Toy Association will offer toy and youth entertainment industry executives critical updates on the tariff situation at the Annual Business Conference in Minneapolis.