WTO Reports Heavy Tariffs on Critical COVID-19 Supplies

April 7, 2020

The World Trade Organization (WTO) reports that some medical supplies essential to combating the coronavirus pandemic are facing hefty international tariffs.

Tariffs on protective supplies used in the fight against the virus are as high as 27 percent in certain countries, with the average tariff being 11.5 percent, the WTO said.

Respirators and ventilators see a global average tariff of 3.3 percent, but India currently imposes a 10 percent tariff.

Some devices are also facing frequent shortages, the WTO noted, including ventilators, oxygen and face masks, X-ray equipment, patient monitors and pulse oximeters, sterilizers, syringes, thermometers, and ultrasound scanners.  

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