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The ongoing trade dispute between the United States and China could lead to Sony increasing the cost of PlayStation hardware in the States to compensate for higher manufacturing costs, should the threatened tariffs go into effect.
As reported by The Wall Street Journal, Sony CFO Hiroki Totoki says that the company's mind isn’t yet made up since the tariffs themselves are still up in the air, but one of the options it has been considering is raising prices of its systems to offset the impact.
“We believe, and therefore have told the U.S. government, that higher tariffs would ultimately damage the U.S. economy,” Totoki reiterated to The Wall Street Journal.
Many Chinese exports will be impacted by tariffs if trade talks go sour, including game consoles. Sony, alongside Nintendo and Microsoft, penned a letter to the Trump administration warning of the negative effects such action would have on the United States’ video game industry, and asking that video game hardware be removed from the list of products affected.
That letter outlined that such action would significantly disrupt the supply chain console makers rely on to manufacture products already working under tight margins. Moving parts of that process outside of China, to either the US or another country “would increase costs even beyond the cost of the proposed tariffs,” suggests the letter.
The threat of new tariffs on Chinese exports comes just as both Sony and Microsoft are on the cusp of introducing a new console generation as well. Rumors circulated after the letter was publicly published that all three console makers were considering moving manufacturing outside of China. So far, Microsoft has denied those rumors while Nintendo has moved some of it is Switch production to Vietnam, though a Nintendo spokesperson says the move was made to “diversify risks.”