The United States government put extra taxes on European products like whisky and French cheese and it is now Europe’s turn to impose extra charges on American products. However, American motorcycle parts are taken off the list and will not be taxed.
In April 2019 we wrote about the trade war between the USA and the European Union. Accusations from both sides about illegal support of the national airplane industry (the USA had given benefits to their airplane industry (Boeing), with an estimated damage to the EU airplane industry (Airbus) of $12 billion) led to procedures and claims with the World Trade Organization (WTO) and verdicts against both parties.
As we reported in 2019, this would also affect owners of an American motorcycle. Right after the first publications of the preliminary list of products that were to be taxed with an extra 25% import duty we reacted to the then responsible European commissioner for trade Cecilia Malmström and asked to leave motorcycle parts out of the package, because motorcycles and motorcycle owners had nothing to do with this conflict and we didn’t see why motorcycle owners should suffer from this. Also the European motorcycle industry association ACEM lobbied against this, together with Harley-Davidson. This lobby was successful and American motorcycle parts were removed from the list.
On 26 October 2020 the WTO gave the EU green light to impose tariffs on American products for 4 billion dollars per year. On 9 November the European Commission published a press release, announcing that a list with products that would be taxed with an extra 25% import tariff will be published in the European Journal soon. However, thanks to the lobby of ACEM et al and our own efforts, the American motorcycle parts will not be imposed with an extra import tax..
Dolf Willigers, FEMA General Secretary, commented: “We are very happy and relieved that American motorcycle parts are taken off the list. For us this is a pleasant surprise and it shows that a good lobby works and that it pays to give your opinion to the European Commission”.
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Top photograph courtesy of Harley-Davidson (flag by Carsten Reisinger)