The United States has increased tariffs on $200 million worth of Chinese goods from 10 per cent to 25 per cent, as a result of slow moving negotiations with China.
As it stands, finished toys are not included on that list, however, as reported by Bloomberg, on Monday the US Trade Representatives Office released a new list of Chinese products worth US$300 billion, which may be subject to the new tariff increases, with toys included. However, these proposed increases wouldn't be implemented until June.
President of the United States, Donald Trump, tweeted that a deal can be reached but it must benefit the US.
"When the time is right we will make a deal with China. My respect and friendship with President Xi is unlimited but, as I have told him many times before, this must be a great deal for the United States or it just doesn’t make any sense."
"We are right where we want to be with China. Remember, they broke the deal with us and tried to renegotiate. We will be taking in tens of billions of dollars in tariffs from China. Buyers of product can make it themselves in the USA (ideal), or buy it from non-tariffed countries," he tweeted.
However, US toy industry commentator and CEO of Global Toy Experts, Richard Gottlieb, said that he believes it unlikely that the tariffs will be imposed.
"June...of course, is the very heart of the shipping season for goods that will be merchandised for Christmas. As 40 per cent of the toy industry's sales occur in the fourth quarter this timing would have a major impact on toy companies, retailers and families.
"I will say this, however, I believe it is unlikely that the new round of tariffs will go into effect at the end of June because the political consequences to the President's re-election are too great.
"The challenge for the toy industry, however, is having to make decisions in such an uncertain enviornment. It is going to be very difficult for toy companies and retailers to know when to ship, whether to ship and at what price," he said.