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China Urges EU to Abandon Electric Vehicle Tariffs Amid Negotiations

China Urges EU to Abandon Electric Vehicle Tariffs Amid Negotiations

China is intensifying efforts to persuade the European Union to halt its plans to impose preliminary tariffs on Chinese electric vehicle imports by July 4, according to reports from China’s Global Times. These tariffs, set as high as 38.1%, are part of an EU investigation into alleged excessive and unfair subsidies benefiting Chinese EV manufacturers.

Negotiations are underway following the EU’s agreement to engage in talks aimed at finding a potential compromise. The European Commission is hosting technical discussions with Chinese officials in Brussels this week to explore options. A spokesperson emphasized that any resolution to the investigation must effectively address concerns about subsidization harming fair competition.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz underscored the need for substantive progress from China in the negotiations. Beijing, meanwhile, has urged the EU to cancel the tariffs and expressed readiness to negotiate, aiming to avoid escalating into a tariff dispute akin to its experiences with the United States during the Trump administration.

China’s Global Times highlighted that the optimal outcome, according to observers, would be for the EU to abandon its tariff plans before the July 4 deadline. However, analysts and European trade groups cautioned that meaningful concessions from China would be necessary for a breakthrough in negotiations.

Alicia Garcia Herrero, a senior fellow at Bruegel, an influential EU think tank, suggested that the EU Commission faces constraints given its lengthy consideration of the tariff measures. She noted that while China is applying pressure, EU member states would need to vote with a qualified majority to overturn the Commission’s decision.

The European Commission is expected to finalize its decision on tariffs by November 2, concluding the anti-subsidy investigation.

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