China and EU to hold talks on electric car tariffs

China and EU to hold talks on electric car tariffs

The risk of Chinese electric car prices soaring in the EU could be easing after both sides agreed to negotiate a planned series of import taxes.
Senior officials from both regions discussed the tariffs in a phone call Saturday and agreed to discuss them further, although friction remains.

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The call marks the first time the two sides have agreed to negotiate since the EU threatened China with tariffs on electric vehicles (EV) of up to 38%.
The EU said Chinese electric vehicles were unfairly subsidized by its government. In response, China accused the EU of protectionism and violations of trade rules.
An EU spokesperson told the BBC that the call between Trade Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis and his Chinese counterpart Wang Wentao was “sincere and constructive”.
They said the two sides “will continue to collaborate at all levels in the coming weeks.”
However, the spokesperson also doubled down on the EU’s opposition to how the Chinese electric vehicle industry is financed.
They said “any negotiated outcome” of the proposed tariffs must address “harmful subsidies” for Chinese electric vehicles.
China issued a similar statement on Saturday, making clear that it still did not agree with the EU.
In addition to his call to the EU, Wentao met with Germany’s Vice Chancellor and Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Action Robert Habeck on Saturday.
In a Facebook post about the meeting, China’s Ministry of Commerce said it had informed Habeck of its “firm opposition” to the tariffs.
He reiterated his threat to file a complaint with the World Trade Organization (WTO) “to firmly defend its legitimate rights and interests.”