President Donald Trump said late Sunday that China has agreed to “reduce and remove” tariffs on U.S. cars, which are now set at 40%.
China has agreed to reduce and remove tariffs on cars coming into China from the U.S. Currently the tariff is 40%.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 3, 2018
In July, China reduced tariffs on U.S. cars from 25% to 15%, but days later tacked on a 25% additional retaliatory duty in response to U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods.
Over the weekend, the U.S. and China agreed to a truce in their tit-for-tat trade war, and Trump said he would not impose new tariffs or raise current ones on Jan. 1, as he had threatened to do.
Sunday’s move, which was not immediately confirmed by Chinese officials, would not have a huge impact on U.S. automakers.
In 2017, the U.S. exported about 250,000 new and used autos to China, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, worth about $10.5 billion. By comparison, Americans bought more than 17 million vehicles last year, according to Automotive News.
While General Motors Co.
and Ford Motor Co.
sell a good number of vehicles in China, most of those are built through joint ventures at Chinese plants, and unaffected by the 40% tariffs.
For example, Ford said it sold nearly 939,000 vehicles in China from January 2017 to October 2017 — but only 2% of those were imported from the U.S.
China has been GM’s largest market for the past six years, the company said, selling more than 4 million vehicles in 2017, and like Ford, the vast majority of those are built in China.
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