China plans to reduce the average tariff rate on imports from most of its trading partners as soon as October, Bloomberg reports. In July, China cut import tariffs on almost 1,500 consumer products ranging from light vehicles, cosmetics to home appliances as part of efforts to open up its economy, the world's second biggest. The move was in line with Beijing's pledge to its trading partners - including the United States - that it would take measures to further increase imports. The Bloomberg report on Thursday did not specify the countries that could enjoy lower Chinese tariffs. At the World Economic Forum in the northern port city of Tianjin, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said on Wednesday that the government will continue to lower import tariffs on some goods. He did not elaborate. The promise to further lower import tariffs came as China and the United Stated remained locked in a bitter trade dispute that has roiled financial markets and cast uncertainty over global supply chains.
American carmakers are losing ground in a shrinking Chinese market, and their problems are mostly tied to a lack of competitiveness rather than the trade war, an industry trade group said. The market share of U.S. brands fell to 10.7 percent in the first eight months of 2018 from 12.2 percent a year earlier, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers. The drop was caused by companies including Ford Motor Co. not refreshing their lineups in a timely manner, Xu Haidong, the association's assistant secretary general, said Tuesday. While a slowing economy is weighing on the Chinese car demand, Xu said that the trade war has had a limited impact on the market. There are no anti-American sentiments or boycotting of U.S. brands by China's car buyers, he said at a media conference in Beijing.
China will strictly prevent "haphazard investment and redundant development" in the automobile industry, an official from the state planning agency said, apparently referring to proposed rules on automakers' investments in new factory capacity. Nian Yong, head of the National Development and Reform Commission's Department of Industrial Coordination, said the agency will soon publish and implement a new set of investment rules. Among other things, the new rules "will restrict industrial investment project management standards, strengthen regulation, prevent haphazard investment and redundant development," he said Saturday. China is looking to fix seemingly perpetual excess capacity in the country's auto industry, which is showing signs of worsening. Nian's remarks, which were made during a speech at an automotive industry conference in Tianjin, come as the industry has sought to dial down the proposed NDRC rules, which were published in July in draft form to seek public comment.
A proposed U.S.-Mexico trade deal would allow President Donald Trump to slap punitive tariffs of up to 25 percent on imports of Mexican-made cars, SUVs and auto parts above certain volumes, auto executives and sources said on Tuesday. The United States and Mexico agreed on Monday to overhaul the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), pressuring Canada to sign up to new auto trade and dispute settlement rules to remain part of the three-way pact. But a previously unreported side agreement between the two countries would allow the United States to pursue "national security" tariffs on annual Mexican car and SUV imports of over 2.4 million vehicles. The side deal would allow national security levies on auto parts imports above a value of $90 billion per year on the same grounds. The administration plans to announce the results of a probe into whether autos and part imports pose a national security risk in the coming weeks