April 22, 2020

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TRADE & TARIFFS: Opportunities or Challenges
 for Charlotte Region Companies?
Mar. 19, 2020 Trade & Tariffs: Opportunities or Challenges for Charlotte Region Companies?  Register Now!
Thursday, March 19, 2020 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM EDT
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Dressler’s Metropolitan
1100 Metropolitan Ave #125
Charlotte, NC 28204

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APR 2020 CWTA Luncheon
Coronavirus Threat to International Commerce

Thursday, April 23, 2020
Dressler’s Metropolitan

MAY 2020 CWTA Luncheon
Regional Transportation Assets

Thursday, May 21, 2020
Dressler’s Metropolitan

JUN 2020 CWTA Dinner
CWTA International Trade Awards Dinner

Thursday, June 18, 2020
Hilton Charlotte Center City

Dear John,

Join us at our favorite lunch spot,
Dressler’s Metropolitan
Thursday, Mar. 19th from 11:30AM to 1:00PM
for networking, a delicious lunch
and a forward-thinking discussion on
Opportunities or Challenges
for Charlotte Region Companies?
with Bob Morgan of Robinson Bradshaw
and Brad Muller of Charlotte Pipe and Foundry
Have tariffs impacted your business or your supply chain network? Are they working to your 
advantage or detriment?
We would be pleased to have you join us on March 19th for an enlightening discussion on trade and tariffs and the challenges they present to Charlotte region companies!

International trade increases the number of goods that domestic consumers can choose from, decreases the cost of those goods through increased competition, and allows domestic industries to ship their products abroad. While all of these effects seem beneficial, free trade isn’t widely accepted as completely beneficial to all parties.

In fact, President Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign was vehemently anti-trade. In June 2018, U.S. President Donald Trump followed through on months of threats to impose sweeping tariffs on China for its alleged unfair trade practices and threatened tariffs on other countries as well.

China retaliated by announcing tariffs on U.S. imported goods, including steel and pork. In the same month, Trump introduced tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from the European Union, Mexico and Canada as well. In August, China announced a 25% tariff on $16 billion worth of U.S. goods including vehicles and crude oil in retaliation to the U.S. tariffs on $16 billion worth of Chinese goods.

Over the 18 months that have followed since, the U.S. and China have been embroiled in countless back-and-forth negotiations, a tit-for-tat tariff war, introduced foreign technology restrictions, fought several WTO cases, consequently leading US-China trade tensions to the brink of a full-blown trade war.

So far, the U.S. has slapped tariffs on $550 billion worth of Chinese products. China, in turn, has set tariffs on $185 billion worth of U.S. goods. Both sides have also threatened qualitative measures that affect U.S. businesses operating in China.

Some of Charlotte’s largest companies–Nucor, Charlotte Pipe & Foundry, Electrolux, to name a few–have some stories to tell about unfair trade practices. To hear about some of those companies’ concerns, CWTA has invited Bob Morgan and Brad Muller to describe what they have learned and how those concerns are being addressed by the White House and Office of the United States Trade Representative.


Having been Chamber president for over 13 years, and now as Director of Public Affairs focusing on government relations and economic development and incentives at Robinson Bradshaw, Bob Morgan is sensitive to client needs in relocating or growing and eligibility for incentives.

As Vice President of Marketing at Charlotte Pipe & Foundry, Brad Muller will tell us firsthand about unfair trade and business practices by the Chinese company Yitai Plastics in Shanghai using the Charlotte Pipe and Foundry name and logo since 2010(!). Charlotte Pipe and Foundry is also suing at the U.S. International Trade Commission for dumping and illegal subsidies of case iron pipe and fittings. The company already won an anti-dumping duty and countervailing duty case against imports of cast-iron fittings from China that were underselling the fittings at 367% less than fair value.

Muller will also tell us about the company’s innovative social media campaign using the humor of pipe-sniffing dogs and a pipe-whisperer (no such things) to emphasize the fact that it can be nearly impossible to determine if imported cast iron pipe and fittings meet the same quality standard as what’s made in the U.S. The campaign has garnered them a 30% click rate to the Charlotte Pipe and Foundry website.


Muller believes that the Trump administration tariffs on a host of Chinese-made goods are effective steps in pushing back against Chinese trade theft. “We truly believe that the Trump administration gets it on trade with China-particularly with China-and they are being very aggressive…to try to curtail some of this behavior,” says Muller.

Please make time to attend to learn more about this important subject affecting all companies engaged in international trade.

Bob Morgan
Director of Public Affairs
Robinson Bradshaw
Bob Morgan

As director of public affairs, Bob Morgan focuses his efforts on government relations, as well as economic development and incentives. He works alongside attorneys in the Government Relations and Economic Development practice groups, assisting clients in the Carolinas encountering statutory or regulatory issues with local and state governments. Bob also serves clients who are relocating or growing and who are eligible for incentives.

Prior to joining Robinson Bradshaw, Bob served as president and CEO of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce for 13 years. During that time, the Chamber announced the relocation or expansion of 789 companies, nearly 70,000 new jobs and $6.7 billion in new investment.


Brad Muller
Vice President of Marketing
Charlotte Pipe and Foundry
Brad Muller
A marketing and communications strategist with more than thirty years of experience in public and corporate affairs, international and government relations, manufacturing and business marketing, crisis management and training, and more.
Spent nearly a decade in Washington, DC, including stints with the U.S. State Department and Edelman Worldwide, the largest public relations and public affairs agency in the world.
Currently leads marketing, corporate communications and government affairs for Charlotte Pipe and Foundry Company, a fifth-generation, family-owned domestic manufacturer based in North Carolina. Founded in 1901, Charlotte Pipe and Foundry is the leading U.S. producer of cast iron and plastic pipe and fittings for plumbing systems.

THE ECONOMIST: America v China: why the trade war won’t end soon
Nov. 14, 2019
BROOKINGS INSTITUTION: Which US communities are most affected by Chinese, EU, and NAFTA retaliatory tariffs?
October 2018
This should be a very informative discussion!
I hope to see you there.
Royallen Wiley, Chapter President
Mailing Address:
Carolina World Trade Association
9221 Holly Hill Farm Road
Charlotte, NC 28277-9302