The trade war between the United States and China now affects over $34 billion worth of goods on either side. The increased costs to imports is expected to cause consumers to look for cheaper versions of products and spike the Chinese counterfeit trade which has a present global value of $1.7 trillion per year. Counterfeit experts say that the trade war is likely to double the size of counterfeit trade. Mainland China is the largest producer of counterfeits.
Buyers are heavily affected by the tariffs. The increased cost of imports will be borne by consumers who purchase more goods from foreign makers.
Evasion of U.S. tariffs is openly advertised by Chinese brokers, offering to hide the evidence that goods were produced in China by exporting through countries such as Malaysia. As the price of legitimate goods rise, counterfeiters can be even more adaptive to the needs of markets than their legitimate counterparts — not least by cutting even more corners. The Department of Justice and Homeland Security are increasing their vigilance of those evading our tariffs. Some tariff evasion results in whistleblower cases as well.