I recently learned of this line item regulation being proposed to impose a new large tariff on motorcycles coming into the United States (US) from the European Union (EU). This new tariff is being proposed as part of some sort of trade dispute between the US and the EU regarding agricultural products. The tariffs being proposed are for 100 percent or higher for motorcycles ranging from 51cc to 500cc in size.
Here is a short list of a few of the items these tariffs are being proposed for: Guts, bladders, stomachs, foliage, branches and other parts of plants without flowers or flower buds, and grasses suitable for bouquets or ornamental purposes and, of course, motorcycles; the obvious next item on that list *imagine me rolling my eyes as hard as I possibly can at this point*
An industry like motorcycling relies on small business owners and competitive pricing in order to thrive. Putting that industry in the middle of an agricultural trade dispute and endangering the livelihood of the workers and the future of competitiveness in the sport is simply not right.
So even if you don’t personally support or plan to buy an Aprilia, Beta, BMW, Ducati, Fantic, GasGas, Husqvarna, KTM, Montesa, Piaggio, Scorpa, Sherco, TM or Vespa, this type of overreach will still have a negative effect on your own preferred brand. If these tariffs go into effect and these bikes become basically unsalable due to price, which encourages industry wide price increases due to lack of competition. Technological innovation is stifled and just all around diversity in the sport would take a huge blow.
Public comments regarding this proposal were opened on December 28th and I encourage everyone who is able to reach out and please make your voice heard about this ASAP. I personally first came across this in Issue 2 – January 2017 of Cyclenews magazine but I have also been seeing references to it in several other online venues. Please spread the word by either forwarding this post to others who may not have seen it or sending them this link to the proposal: https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=USTR-2016-0025-0001
I’ve come across two avenues to make your comments to the regulators:
First is directly through the government website: https://www.regulations.gov/comment?D=USTR-2016-0025-0001
and the second is through the AMA: https://cqrcengage.com/amacycle/app/write-a-letter?0&engagementId=277013&ep=AAAAC2Flc0NpcGhlcjAxzsOELVHLDY2nzmBQjaelTIr7BeqhW0xzPGAFL8SLWzuhypBulEN5yad4yogU0Q55Ze7NcYEJfnx0PaJkyTgVeS42DNHhZzTDVDzL5zFuuZ0&lp=0
We are a diverse and often divided community on a great many subjects, but there is one thing I think we can all agree on. Growing and developing the sport of motorcycling is a benefit to all those involved and making it more accessible and protecting the businesses and market that make it possible are important.