President Donald Trump and his administration never cease to amaze us.
According to Reuters , the Trump administration is considering imposing regulations on harsh emissions for imported cars . Yes, only those that are imported. Those manufactured on American soil would get rid of these strict standards. The objective: to favor the American automobile industry.
And it is something that the same administration considers that de-legitimized the US state environmental agency (EPA) forgiving a million-dollar fine to Harley-Davidson for having cheated with the emissions of their motorcycles (the purest Dieselgate style of Volkswagen). And all this, in addition, in the middle of a commercial war with China .
According to Reuters sources (two senior executives in the automobile industry), it is an idea mentioned last week by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, making it clear that the automotive industry did not have the idea or support it.
Although, on the other hand, it is still true that US manufacturers have long been calling for the elimination of non-customs trade barriers with South Korea and Japanand other markets. They consider that local regulations unfairly prevent them from exporting to those countries.
The Wall Street Journal also echoed the news, claiming that Donald Trump ordered several state agencies to look for ways with current laws to subject imported cars to stricter emission standards.
As for imposing tougher emission standards for imported cars, that is, in Trump’s mind, of foreign brands, it implies at least two problems. The first is that it could be considered a violation of the rules of the World Trade Organization, the WTO.
The second is that 70% of the cars of Korean and Japanese brands sold in the United States are manufactured in the United States. There are 17 automobile factories of foreign brands in the United States. 12 of them are from Asian brands. According to Autodata, only 21% of the 17.2 million vehicles sold in the United States in 2017 were imported.