Commission Regulation 2020/1296 discriminates EU E-Bike Assemblers

1288 days ago

3 minutes

On 29 September, we announced the publication of a new Regulation on essential bikes parts from China. LEVA-EU has now thoroughly analysed the text and concludes that the Regulation results in a serious discrimination of companies that only assemble electric bicycles. Below is a summary of this analysis. On 8 December, LEVA-EU has a meeting with DG Trade to discuss the problem. A story to be continued.

  • Since 1997, there is an extension of the anti-dumping duties on conventional bicycles from China by means of 48.5% anti-circumvention duties on essential bicycle parts.
  • European assemblers can obtain an exemption from this anti-circumvention duty. They must prove to the European Commission that the value of Chinese components does not exceed 59% of the value of the bike or the value added through assembly must be more than 25% of the manufacturing cost.
  • Once such exemption obtained, it is valid indefinitely and it does not require any additional compliance/reporting guarantees and obligations such as paying security deposits, etc.
  • Some essential bicycle parts are also used for the assembly of electric bicycles. They have been excluded from the 48.5% anti-circumvention duties by Regulation 512/2013. However, explicit exemption must be obtained by applying for end-use authorisation with national customs.
  • With the introduction of anti-dumping duties on electric bicycles from China, some companies have moved their assembly to Europe. In some cases, companies had an exemption for essential bicycle components for conventional bicycles, which they also used to import bicycle components for electric bicycles. However, there was uncertainty as to the legality of this procedure.
  • In an attempt to provide legal certainty, the European Commission has published Regulation 2020/1296. With that Regulation, the Commission certifies that companies in the EU, that assemble both conventional and electric bicycles, are allowed to use their exemption, originally awarded for assembly of conventional bicycles, for the duty free import of essential bicycle components for the assembly of electric bicycles.
  • This extension of the scope of the exemption appears to be automatic. In the Regulation, there is no procedure to report nor to assess whether companies effectively use essential bicycle components for the assembly of electric bicycles.
  • This Regulation does not grant companies, that assemble electric bicycles only, the same exemption for essential bicycle components imported for the assembly of electric bicycles. Instead, these companies must obtain exemption from 48.5% anti-circumvention duties through the end-use authorisation. This procedure is handled by national customs. There are numerous examples of companies trying to obtain this authorisation in vain. The administrative and financial burden resulting from this procedure is extremely heavy and complicated.
  • LEVA-EU has concluded that Commission Implementing Regulation 2020/1296 violates the principle of equal treatment and creates unfair conditions in the market of electric bicycles in the EU.  Therefore, LEVA-EU is of the opinion that the Commission makes either all producers of electric bicycles subject to an end use relief or to the Commission exemption system. 
  • If your company is assembling e-bikes only and has (had) difficulties in obtaining end-use authorization, please contact Annick Roetynck at LEVA-EU, tel. +32 9 233 60 05, email annick@leva-eu.com. We are collecting relevant testimonies.
Annick Roetynck

Annick is the Manager of LEVA-EU, with decades of experience in two-wheeled and light electric mobility.

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