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U.S. considers tariffs against China if it produces electric vehicles in Mexico

The U.S. reaction came after BYD, a Chinese electric vehicle brand, announced future construction plans of a new plant in Mexico

Biden eleva los aranceles a bienes chinos y los lleva al 100 % en los vehículos eléctricos
Biden eleva los aranceles a bienes chinos y los lleva al 100 % en los vehículos eléctricos | Shutterstock

May 15, 2024 8:55am

Updated: May 15, 2024 9:24am

The United States is not ruling out additional tariffs against China if the People’s Republic begins to produce electric vehicles in Mexico, U.S. trade representative Katherine Tai, said on Tuesday.

During a press conference at the White House, Tai referred to the plans of Chinese auto manufacturers to establish automotive plants in the neighboring country as a matter of concern for the U.S. government and its automotive industry.

"Stay informed," the official warned.

Tai's warning comes on the same day that Biden announced new tariffs worth $18 billion on imports of products from China.

Among the most heavily imports effected were electric vehicles with tariffs ranging from 25% to 100%. Another significant tariff hike fell on lithium-ion batteries used in electric vehicles, which will rise from 7.5% to 25% this year.

Chinese electric vehicle manufacturer BYD also announced the future construction of a new company plant in central Mexico, a country that constitutes the firm's first market outside of the Asian country.

The announcement came Tuesday from BYD Americas regional director Stella Li at an event in Mexico City in which she presented the brand’s new 'Shark' model, a medium-sized hybrid pick-up truck.

At that event, the regional head dismissed that the new Chinese business model could negatively impact U.S. automakers since they are not targeting the U.S. as a potential market.

According to the executive, the Mexican plant, which is expected to open towards the end of this year, would have a production capacity of up to 150,000 vehicles per year.