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EU to Impose Shock Tariffs of Up to 38% on Chinese Electric Cars

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Photo: EU to Impose Shock Tariffs of Up to 38% on Chinese Electric Cars. Source: Getty Images
Photo: EU to Impose Shock Tariffs of Up to 38% on Chinese Electric Cars. Source: Getty Images

From July 4, the European Union will implement tariffs on electric cars manufactured in China, ranging up to 38.1% depending on the manufacturer. This was announced by the European Commission on June 12, according to Politico.

The decision to impose tariffs follows a months-long investigation by the European Commission into state support for Chinese electric vehicle manufacturers. Specifically, Chinese car manufacturers BYD, Geely, and SAIC will face tariffs of 17.4%, 20%, and 38.1% respectively. The European Commission examined these companies earlier this year, although they did not provide the amount of information Brussels had hoped to receive. Manufacturers that provided no information at all will also face the highest tariff of 38.1%. Other companies that cooperated with the European Commission will pay a tariff of 21%.

"When our partners violate the rules, we will defend our rights," said Trade Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis.

This level of tariffs has significantly exceeded the predictions of political experts and economic analysts, risking a trade war between the EU and China. Reportedly, China has already initiated an investigation into European alcohol producers and is threatening retaliation against EU farmers and aircraft manufacturers.

The Chinese Chamber of Commerce to the EU expressed "shock, deep disappointment, and dissatisfaction with this protectionist measure." Chinese trade representatives called the European investigation a "witch hunt" and stated that the tariffs would become a "serious market barrier."

At the same time, Valdis Dombrovskis assured that the tariffs are based on "clear evidence from our extensive investigation and are implemented in full compliance with WTO rules." He added that the EU will now engage with Chinese authorities and all parties to conclude this investigation.

It should be noted that in mid-May, The Gaze reported that the EU was preparing harsh tariffs on Chinese electric cars, although this could create problems for European manufacturers themselves.

In 2023, the number of new electric car registrations in EU countries reached 2.4 million. Of these, about 20% or nearly half a million cars came to Europe from China.

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