WASHINGTON – The Biden administration said Friday it will keep tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars worth of Chinese imports in place while it continues a statutory review of the duties imposed by former president Donald Trump.

The US Trade Representative’s office said in a federal notice that it received requests from companies and other interested parties to maintain the “Section 301” tariffs imposed in 2018 and 2019.

The comments were collected during the spring and summer.

Based on the 1974 trade law under which the duties were imposed, the US Trade Representative will move on to a formal review of whether to keep the tariffs in place, a process that may take months.

The Biden administration has been considering whether to remove some tariffs as a way to reduce inflationary pressures. Reuters reported last month that consideration of this move was put on hold following China’s military manoeuvres near Taiwan after House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to the island. REUTERS