NEW YORK (Reuters) – Levi Strauss & Co has been “deliberate and diligent” in moving production out of China because of uncertainty hanging over tariffs on goods imported from China, Chief Executive Officer Chip Bergh said in an interview with Reuters.
Just 1% or 2% of Levi’s product sold in the United States are manufactured in China, Bergh said, compared to 16% two years ago. Bergh was speaking one day before President Donald Trump said he would impose tariffs on another $300 billion of Chinese goods, including apparel.
Trump - Tariffs - Tool - Trade - Terms
Trump has used tariffs as a tool to negotiate better trade terms, saying bad deals cost millions of U.S. jobs. Along with apparel, the new tariffs hit consumer goods such as electronics and toys and come in addition to those already imposed on $250 billion of other goods imported from China.
The on-again, off-again nature of the U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods had created uncertainty for many U.S. retailers, Bergh said.
Day - Day - Days
“Every day is a new day,” he said. “Sometimes it looks like it’s definitely going to happen and then other days you think it’s off, it’s not going to happen.”
San Francisco-based Levi’s, which returned to the public markets in March, is part of a wave of retailers that have been shifting supply chains out of China to countries such as Vietnam and Bangladesh. The trend was initially in response to higher Chinese wages but the exodus is expected to be accelerated by the new tariffs, which Trump said will go into effect Sept. 1.
Consumers - Costs - Impact - Retail
They are expected to increase consumers’ costs and have an impact across the entire retail...
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