Congress passes trade bill extending tariff relief for manufacturing components

Congress has passed legislation that temporarily reduces or suspends tariffs on 639 items, mostly components that American manufacturers use in their production processes.

The Miscellaneous Tariff Bill comes up periodically. On Tuesday it passed the Senate without opposition or a recorded vote. The bill passed the House last week, and now goes to the president for his signature.

The package of bills is sponsored by individual members of Congress and designed to provide relief to U.S. companies that import foreign products not available in the U.S.

Few finished goods get favored tariff treatment. Almost all are chemicals and other items used in the chemical, pharmaceutical, textile, electronics and auto industries.