Tariffs for Colorado by the Numbers

Tariffs for Colorado by the Numbers
17 Jul 2018 by Nick Carpenter

Recently, the news has been awash with reports about tariffs and trade barriers enacted by President Trump’s administration. It seems that week after week there is talk about new trade restrictions with the European Union and Canada. On the other side of the world, hangs the “trade war” with China, a set of tariffs enacted by the Trump Administration and retaliatory tariffs enacted by the Chinese government in response. There has been endless analysis from economists, politicians, and the like. Most of this analysis has been done in terms of political fallout or theoretical economic principles. Very little of this has gotten to the heart of how these tariffs will impact businesses and individuals.  Last week, the Chamber of Commerce of the United States released a report that laid out the projected cost of the Trump Administration’s tariffs and tariffs that will be implemented in retaliation by the numbers in each state. Though the report did include all 50 states, this article will be focusing on overviewing the report’s projections for Colorado. If you would like to know the figures for other states, that information is available here CCUSA website for the figures for other states.


Colorado’s trading partners that the Trump administration has enacted tariffs on are Canada, China, the European Union, and Mexico. Specific industries have also been singled out for tariffs and trade barriers such as aluminum, food, cosmetics, and raw materials.


For trade between Colorado and Canada, the new tariffs impact food companies, aluminum production, and cosmetics. In total, the new tariffs are projected to cost Colorado $50,653,642.  Tariffs on exported food items such as bread and pastries will cost $13,536,293. Tariffs on aluminum products will loose $9,046,224 and soap exports tariffs will cost $5,501,031.


 Colorado’s exports to China that will be impacted by the new tariffs fall in aluminum exports, meat exports, and vehicle exports and will cost $30,310,164 in total. Tariffs on aluminum exports to China will cost $29,111,373. Meat exports will cost $272,139, while vehicle export tariffs will cost $201,750.


Tariffs imposed on the European Union, will primarily impact iron ore, steel, motorcycle components, whisky and will cost the state a total of $8,246,390.  Iron ore and steel exports will cost $4,822,794. Tariffs on components used in motorcycles will cost $1,123,744 while tariffs on whiskey exports will cost $624,743.


Tariffs on products exported to Mexico—One of Colorado’s largest trading partners—will be significantly more costly. In total, new tariffs on goods exported to Mexico will cost Colorado $187,658,359. The food industry will be affected the most.  Non-frozen meat products, cheese products, and frozen meet products being targeted. New tariffs on non-frozen meat will cost $105,838,309, on cheese $35,927,033 and on frozen products $15,833,694.


In total all of these tariffs will cost the state $ 276,868,555. The report also raises significant concerns over what the new tariffs will do to Colorado’s job market. According to the CCUSA, Colorado has 733,900 jobs that are supported by global trade. These jobs are at risk because they rely on global sales of the products listed above. If sales of these products go down due to the rising prices, it could put all of those jobs in jeopardy.