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Wednesday 19 May 2021


Harley and ACEM Statements on EU Tariffs

In a news release issued on May 17, Harley-Davidson CEO Jochen Zeitz has welcomed the statement released by EU Executive Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis.
"We are encouraged by the announcement that tariffs affecting our products will not escalate from 31% to 56% [in June].
"This is the first step in the right direction in a dispute not of our making. Harley-Davidson employees, dealers, stakeholders and motorcycles have no place in this trade war. These tariffs provide other motorcycle manufacturers with an unfair competitive advantage in the EU.
"European motorcycles only pay up to 2.4% to be imported into the U.S. We want free and fair trade."

The release went on to say that Harley "reaffirms its commitment to defend its position in Europe. The company will continue to pursue its legal challenge to the Binding Origin Information (BOI) revocation, and its application for extended reliance.
"Harley-Davidson remains committed to free and fair trade and is focused on remaining globally competitive in the interests of all its stakeholders and is committed to ensuring its customers around the world have access to its products."

Harley Chairman, CEO and President Jochen Zeitz: "This is the first step in the right direction in a dispute not of our making."

However, the threat of 56% tariffs has not yet entirely gone away.
In a joint announcement by the EU and the U.S. on addressing global steel and aluminum excess capacity, it became apparent that the decision by the EU is only to temporarily suspend (for six months) the doubling of tariffs on US-made motorcycles above 500 cc, which were set to come into effect on 1 June 2021.
ACEM, the Brussels based trade association for the motorcycle industry in Europe, says that "the EU's Rebalancing Measures remain in place at 25%. This means U.S. motorcycles still bear a 31% tariff, which has a considerable negative affect on bilateral trade and on European motorcycle dealers and customers.
"Furthermore, the suspension of the additional 25% is a temporary measure which still threatens significant harm to the European motorcycle sector, if a resolution is not found in the next six months."
In a letter, signed by motorcycle industry CEOs and sent today to the European Commissioner for Trade, Mr. Dombrovskis, ACEM continues to call for the removal of motorcycles from the EU's list of products impacted by rebalancing tariffs, agreeing that "motorcycles have no place in an unrelated trade dispute."
ACEM says it "supports all EU and U.S. efforts to urgently de-escalate this trade conflict, and to return to non-punitive tariff levels as soon as possible."