MEXICO
US plans tariffs for the automotive workbench / New USMCA agreement does not stop Trump
Donald Trump’s latest announcement would be a serious blow to the Mexican automotive industry – the US president has declared a state of emergency due to what he sees as an excessive flow of illegal immigrants across the southern border of the US, tweeting on the evening of 31 May 2019 that he would “impose a 5% tariff on all goods coming into our country from Mexico.” The new tariffs will come into effect on 10 June. The White House also plans to increase the tariffs to 25% unless Mexico stops the influx of illegal immigrants. In this, Trump does not seem to feel impaired by the new USMCA trade agreement (see Plasteurope.com of 11.12.2018) that was signed with Mexico and Canada a few months ago, succeeding NAFTA.

This would be a severe setback not only for the Mexican industry, but also for the many European companies that are present in the country. All major brands are manufacturing in the “low-wage” country nowadays, supplying the assembly lines of automotive OEMs in the US with parts.

According to figures from the U.S. Census Bureau, these parts were worth USD 6.25 bn (EUR 5.6 bn) in the first three months of 2019 alone, an almost 3.5% increase against the same period in 2018. Auto parts thus ranked second among exports to the US directly behind transport vehicles. Total exports from Mexico to its neighbouring country amounted to USD 86.6 bn in the first quarter, while exports from the US to Mexico amounted to only USD 64 bn. Mexico is the US’ number one trading partner, ahead of Canada, China, Japan and Germany.



Among others, German front-end module supplier HBPO (Lippstadt; www.hbpogroup.com) is building new plants in Saltillo and Aguascalientes. Lighting technology and electronics supplier Hella (Lippstadt; www.hella.com) put into operation a new electronics plant in Apaseo el Grande in 2018 (see Plasteurope.com of 06.07.2018) and has expanded the capacities of its lighting plants in Irapuato and El Salto. The same applies to French aircraft supplier Safran (Paris; www.safran-group.com), which is to manufacture composite turbine blades in Quérétaro.

Röchling’s (Mannheim / Germany; www.roechling.com) car division owns a plant in the Mexican city of Silao, competitor Akwel Automotive (Champfromier / France; www.akwel-automotive.com) is represented by its subsidiary Cadillac Plastic with production sites in Ixtaczoquitlan and Orizaba. Injection moulding machinery manufacturer Engel (Schwertberg / Austria; www.engelglobal.com) set up a second sales and service office just a few weeks ago. The list of affected companies from the plastics industry includes many more.
04.06.2019 Plasteurope.com [242631-0]
Published on 04.06.2019
Mexiko: US-Strafzölle für die Automotive-Werkbank geplantGerman version of this article...

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