BEIJING (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump’s proposed tariffs on another $200 billion of Chinese goods threaten a niche trade in minor metals and rare earths used in everything from stomach remedies and jet engines to consumer electronics.
More than 6,000 items have been earmarked for a 10 percent import tariff, including – in some form – 32 of the 35 minerals the United States in May designated as “critical” to its economic and national security.
These minerals and products based on them accounted for well over $1 billion of U.S. imports from China in 2017, and traders warn U.S. consumers will end up paying a premium if tariffs are put in place, albeit one cushioned by the recent devaluation of the yuan.
Below is a list of mineral products in the tariff list where the United States relies heavily on China.
No primary refined production of bismuth has taken place in the United States since 1997. Applications for this white metal with a pinkish hue range from stomach remedies to sprinkler systems, and China accounted for 77 percent of U.S. bismuth imports over 2013-2016, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS). This includes waste and scrap and totaled $22.8 million last year.