Press Release

EV tariffs alone will not deliver on the promise of the EU Green Deal

June 12, 2024

Just introducing tariffs while scrapping the 2035 cars law would be self defeating

Electric vehicles made in China will be subject to EU import tariffs of up to 38.1%, the European Commission announced today. Green group Transport & Environment welcomed the announcement but said a broader industrial policy that includes the 2035 EU deadline for polluting car sales is needed to build up the EV supply chain in the EU while delivering affordable, Made-in-Europe electric cars.

Julia Poliscanova, senior director for vehicles and emobility supply chains at T&E, said: "The EU Green Deal came with the promise of growth and jobs, and that’s not possible if our EVs are all imported. The tariffs are welcome but Europe needs a strong industrial policy to speed up electrification and localise manufacturing. Just introducing tariffs while scrapping the 2035 deadline for polluting cars would slow down the transition and be self defeating."

Maintaining the EU’s CO2 goals for carmakers, including the 2035 zero-emission cars target, is essential to send the right signal to carmakers, T&E said. An EU industrial policy should also set strong sustainability criteria that can reward local clean manufacturing. An EU investment plan is needed to support EV and battery manufacturing in a more effective way than the current patchwork of national state aid.

One in four EVs sold in Europe this year could be imported from China, according to T&E analysis published in March. The EU will keep three-quarters of the revenue raised from tariffs, and T&E said this money should be allocated to scaling up the battery supply chain via the EU Innovation Fund.

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