The White House hikes tariffs on plastic syringes made in China

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration announced Tuesday that it’s raising taxes on a range of imported products from China, including syringes, needles, and surgical gloves. 

Pitched as a plan to support American workers, the tariffs are meant to protect domestic manufacturers from China’s “unfair trade practices” and “artificially low-priced exports.” In addition to medical devices, the United States will raise tariffs on $18 billion worth of products including electric vehicles, batteries, and semiconductors. 

The inclusion of syringes comes after the Food and Drug Administration’s repeated warnings to U.S. medical providers about quality issues with plastic syringes from China. The agency first alerted consumers in November 2023 about leaks and breaks associated with Chinese syringes. In March, the FDA called attention to three warning letters it sent to firms in China for selling syringes that had not received FDA clearance. It has since sent a warning letter to Cardinal Health.

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