CA Statement on the Impact of U.S. Tariffs and Canadian Retaliatory Tariffs on Cosmetics and Personal Care Products

Posted Date: 17-July-2018

Government of Canada Signs Environmental Cooperation Agreement with the United Sates and Mexico

Cosmetics Alliance Canada is the leading trade association representing the cosmetics and personal care products industry in Canada. Our members include many companies based in the U.S. and virtually all our members have highly integrated North American supply chains.

The imposition of steel and aluminum tariffs by the Trump Administration earlier this spring, based on the President’s “national security” authority, has now seen the imposition of retaliatory counter-measures by affected jurisdictions on the equivalent value of U.S. steel, aluminum and various manufactured goods. For our industry in Canada, this has meant the imposition of a 10% “surtax” effective July 1st on four categories of personal care products imported from the U.S., namely: manicure/pedicure preparations, hair lacquers, shaving preparations, and facial cleansers/body washes.

Since the advent of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) over 25 years ago, like many other industries, cosmetics and personal care products have become highly integrated across North American, sharing supply of raw materials, packaging components, manufacturing, distribution channels, and so on. While a finished product may be made in one country, it’s numerous inputs and components may come from another. Importantly, North American is treated essentially as “one-market” and product supply is managed accordingly.

Industry relies heavily on NAFTA, open markets and tariff-free trade.  This is critical to the strength of the industry and enhances the ability to expand manufacturing, create jobs, innovate, and grow supporting goods and services related to the industry in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Any disruptions due to the imposition of tariffs, or loss of NAFTA, threatens all three jurisdictions who contribute to the supply of inputs and components regardless of where the finished product is made. Tariffs threaten access to markets and to products manufactured in North America, and negatively impacts industry’s growth, competitiveness, and consumer choice.

Industry in the U.S., represented by the U.S. Personal Care Products Council (PCPC) and our U.S.-based member companies, support NAFTA and strongly oppose any policy that results in increased tariffs. A copy of PCPC’s most recent statement can be found here. PCPC continues to actively engage with the U.S. Administration and Congress to discuss the negative impacts of a trade war on industry, workers, and consumers. They have also endorsed legislation sponsored by Senator Bob Corker (R-TN) that would require Congressional approval for tariffs imposed under the President’s “national security” authority.


For more information, please contact:

Susan Nieuwhof

Cosmetics Alliance Canada – Communications