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Uniqlo President Threatens To Leave U.S. If Trump Tax Goes Through

Fast Retailing Co. Opens First German Uniqlo StoreFast Retailing Co. Opens First German Uniqlo Store
The logo of Uniqlo, the fashion clothing retailer operated by Fast Retailing.Photograph by Krisztian Bocsi — Bloomberg via Getty Images

The president of Japanese clothing retailer Uniqlo threatened to close U.S. stores if President Donald Trump creates policy forcing the company to manufacture in the United States.

Tadashi Yanai, founder and president of Fast Retailing—which owns Uniqlo—told Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun that he “will withdraw from the United States” if directly instructed to, according to NBC News.

“Anyone will think that it is an open-and-shut and impossible situation,” Yanai told Asahi Shimbun. “If [manufacturing products in the United States] is not a good decision for consumers, it is meaningless to do business in the United States.”

Trump has repeatedly threatened to impose a tariff on foreign imports as part of his campaign promise to revitalize American manufacturing. In January, the president urged Toyota to reconsider the location of its planned factory in Mexico. “Toyota Motor said will build a new plant in Baja, Mexico, to build Corolla cars for U.S. NO WAY!” Trump tweeted. “Build plant in U.S. or pay big border tax.”

But retail executives are fearful that such measures, like Trump’s suggested 20% border adjustment tax, could significantly increase prices for consumers.

“The border adjustable tax is harmful, untested, and would put American retail jobs at risk and force consumers to pay as much as 20 percent more for family essentials,” Retail Industry Leaders Association president Sandy Kennedy said in February.