Tag Archive: anti dumping

  1. The Evolution of Cargo Bikes Rolls On

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    Source: The Mayor EU

    A forthcoming Rotterdam-based e-bike campaign means that it will soon be possible to borrow a cargo bike free of charge.

    A forthcoming Rotterdam-based e-bike campaign means that it will soon be possible to borrow a cargo bike free of charge. In a city where almost anything is possible by bike, the trial period will pave the way for the transportation of bulky waste, further promoting fitness and sustainability.

    The trial period will offer electric cargo bikes free of charge, in which items such as large garden waste or second-hand items can be deposited in environmental parks and certified locations. Here, the items will embark on a new journey and become useful every day goods for others in the city.

    The Municipality of Rotterdam announced the new initiative only last week in an effort to encourage residents to embrace the opportunity to increase their recycling quota and cut down on incineration. The public will be able to reach environmental parks in this favored transportation alternative by reserving a cargo bike or trailer from multiple locations and using it for part of the day to transport voluminous waste.

    The trailer is an open cart of 2 x 1.1 x 0.34 meters, and the size of the electric cargo bike is 1 x 0.5 x 0.6 meters, ideal for household waste that does not fit into underground containers or garbage bags. Examples of this waste include furniture such as sofas and cupboards, and large electronic items such as washing machines and vacuum cleaners, all of which can take on a new leaf of life by being transported to a recycling plant. In addition, trailers can also be attached to a car for ease of use.

    The trial period will remain in place until the end of October when the authorities will evaluate the usability and the usefulness of the new service. A discussion about extending the service permanently from 2023 will address the success and the uptake of the environmental campaign. At this time, only residents of Rotterdam can adopt the service, with businesses unable to apply.

  2. EPPO circumvention investigations

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    In February, the European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) has communicated on two cases of alleged circumvention of the anti-dumping duties on electric bicycles from China.

    One case is situated in Naples, where companies allegedly imported dissassembled e-bikes from China and declared them as e-bike parts and spare parts, instead of e-bikes. The companies are also accused of evading VAT by using Turkey as country of origin and Turkish shell companies.

    The second case is situated in Palermo, Sicily. A company there is accused of importing e-bikes from China and falsely declaring Malaysia as country of origin. This case was initiated following a report by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF).

    Investigations into both cases are ongoing.

    If you have any questions on how to import components and e-bikes from outside the European Union or on how to import components, with a view to assembling in the EU, please contact LEVA-EU Manager, Annick Roetynck, annick@leva-eu.com. We have an exhaustive briefing with full details on how to avoid circumvention and how to work legally both in and outside the EU.

  3. UK to end Anti-Dumping Conventional Bicycles

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    Most questions as to how the Brexit transition will be on 1st January 2021 remain unanswered. Nevertheless, at least one question appears to have been sorted.

    There is still no certainty for instance as to the technical rules that will apply to LEVs in the UK. Another unresolved matter concerns the import and export rates for LEVs and their components between Britain and Europe. But what is certain now is that, on 1st January next year, the UK will no longer apply anti-dumping measures on bicycles from China.

    This decision has been taken despite the fact that UK businesses, which produce bikes had applied for a continuation of the measures. The termination has been based on the fact that the market share of these producers is insufficient to allow for continuation of the dumping duties. There is still a possibility for appeal until 30th October.

    This measure only concerns conventional bicycles. The issue of dumping duties on Chinese e-bikes has not been resolved yet. The termination of duties on conventional bicycles, will also remove the anti-circumvention measures against certain essential bicycle components. That will make life considerably easier for assemblers of electric bikes in the UK. If they want to import those components from China, they will no longer have to apply for end-use authorisation. The question as to what import duties will be applied for bikes and components from China still remains unanswered. Definitely to be continued …

    Photo by Frederick Tubiermont on Unsplash

  4. Anti-dumping duties Chinese e-bikes still disrupting European businesses

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    In our campaign against dumping duties on electric bicycles from China, one of our main arguments was that a very large part of components come from China. Both importers who had their e-bikes assembled in China and so-called European manufacturers often had no other option but to buy from China because there is simply no production elsewhere.

    Remarkably enough, this was confirmed by the European Commission itself when on 20 December 2018, they published Regulation No 1387/2013 suspending import duties on a number of products. The list includes frames, front forks, pedals, handlebars and saddles. The Commission explained that this duty suspension was necessary “to ensure a sufficient and uninterrupted supply of (…) products which are unavailable in the Union and thereby avoid any disturbances in the market for those products.

    It is utterly discouraging, one DG taking measures on the basis of one thing and another DG taking measures on the basis of exactly the opposite.

    As a result of the dumping duties, many companies are still working on an alternative for the assembly of electric bicycles in China. LEVA-EU has published a briefing for its members explaining what the legal options are both in and outside the EU. LEVA-EU also has a specific briefing on the above-mentioned suspension of duties.

    Many companies are still looking for assembly capacity in or outside the EU and for component suppliers outside China. Any company that has assembly capacity available or is able to supply electric bike components from outside China is invited to contact LEVA-EU. Please provide us with full company details and with detailed information on your activities. All proposals will be carefully scrutinized before passing them on to potentially interested companies.

    Please send an email with the required information to Annick Roetynck, LEVA-EU Manager, email annick@leva-eu.com

  5. How to deal with dumping on Chines e-bikes? Read LEVA-EU Briefing!

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    Have the anti-dumping duties on e-bikes from China disrupted your supply chain? Are you still struggling with finding an alternative in our outside the EU? Do you get lost in the Commission’s legalese on anti-dumping, anti-circumvention, rules of origin, etc? LEVA-EU’s briefing on the dumping case holds all the answers.

    The LEVA-EU briefing on the consequences of the imposition of definitive anti-dumping measures has all the necessary details on various legal solutions to continue to assemble and/or import electric bicycles.

    In the briefing we explain the following issues:

    • the scope of the measures
    • the applied rates
    • the application date and which provisional duties customs may and may not be collected
    • how and how not to continue import of e-bikes from China
    • how to organize legal assembly in or outside Europe
    • how to legally import components for electric bicycles without paying any duties at all, no anti-dumping duties, no anti-circumvention duties and no regular import duties

    For further details on the briefing please contact LEVA-EU Manager, Annick Roetynck, email annick@leva-eu.com, tel. +32 9 233 60 05

  6. LEVA-EU publishes detailed briefing on dumping case

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    The imposition of duties on electric bicycles from China has left many companies, both in Europe and in China, with a myriad of questions and problems as to how to continue their business. That is why LEVA-EU has published a comprehensive briefing on the case in an attempt to answer all these questions.

    The LEVA-EU briefing has detailed information on all legal solutions to contine assembly/import of electric bicycles. The briefing also has full details on the import of Chinese components for the assembly in Europe. It appears that many national customs services are not correctly informed. They often impose 48.5% anti-circumvention duties on bicycle components destined for the assembly of electric bicycles. This is unjust and therefore the briefing contains a full explanation on how to address this issue with national customs services.

    But the briefing has a lot more information on aspects such as the scope, detailed rates, application dates, etc. As more questions arise, LEVA-EU will continue to update this briefing. LEVA-EU is also collecting information from its members on those customs services that do apply the correct procedures for the import of components, with a view of presenting those services which continue to apply the anti-circumvention duties with best practice.

    For further details on the briefing please contact LEVA-EU Manager, Annick Roetynck, email annick@leva-eu.com, tel. +32 9 233 60 05

  7. Bike Europe publishes biased White Paper on dumping case

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    This week, Bike Europe published a White Paper that allegedly contains “all you need to know on EUs anti-dumping measures on e-bikes imported from China”. I have carefully read the White Paper and my conclusion is that there is not that much to know, except for: come to Europe, have your e-bikes made here and all your problems will be solved.

    The main article in the White Paper sketches 5 “illegal and legal scenarios to avoid anti-dumping duties on e-bikes from China”. To be precise, the article contains 4 illegal scenarios, whilst scenario 5 is an undisguised advertisement for setting up shop in Europe. Bike Europe declares that whilst there are only 70 European producers of e-bikes so far (the Commission only found 37), there are 250 bicycle producers eagerly awaiting e-bike orders. From this, it appears that the 25-year old dumping duties on conventional bikes still do not have the desired result, if these 250 producers all have unused production capacity available for the production of e-bikes.

    Go to Bulgaria

    Bike Europe continues the advertisement with the announcement that it is now even cheaper to have them made in for instance Romania and Bulgaria, then in China. With this statement, the authors of the White Paper seem to be forgetting that one of the reasons why Chinese exporters and European importers are hit with antidumping duties is because the value of their bikes is lower than the normal value of EU produced e-bikes.

    The authors continue with their undisguised advertisement and even switch into a political gear, just in case we forget how bad China is: “For Chinese, Taiwanese or companies coming from other Asian countries, there are no closed doors in Europe. There are no barriers to overcome in terms of for instance the obligation to partner with a European company; contrary to EU companies that want to produce in China. Investing in production in Europe brings not only an escape on the e-bike antidumping duties, but also shorter supply chains and being close to market; all elements for establishing a futureproof business.

    Never in my wildest dreams had I ever thought that Bike Europe would join EBMA in their popular tactic of “us” against “them”. The whole anti-dumping case is meant to be read as a battle of European manufacturers against Chinese manufacturers, (words I wrote more than a year ago) and that is exactly what Bike Europe is propagating.

    Importers’ ordeal ignored

    It is absolutely baffling to me to find that this White Paper even goes as far as justifying the mandate of the EBMA, whilst not paying the slightest attention to the ordeal that an estimated 150 European SMEs are going through due to this unjust, unfair and unfounded case. All these European SMEs, who had their e-bikes assembled in China, had to turn their businesses upside down and inside out overnight. Bike Europe does not have the slightest attention for any of those SME’s whose managers literally had nightmares over laying off staff, not honouring contracts, even potentially going bankrupt, just because  one signature from someone in Brussels, had them convicted and punished for cheating.

    I was on my way to the Belgian (e)bike exhibition, Velofollies, when the news was announced about the Commission’s final decision. I did not meet one person who cheered over the news, not a single one! The person I remember best is the owner of a small company, designing, specifying and marketing  their e-bikes here, but having them assembled in China. It had taken them years to organize their relationships with Chinese suppliers. For all these years, he and his wife had done nothing but work. When he heard the news about the duties, he hung his head in absolute sadness and said: “So, we have worked for nothing last year.” Following Bike Europe’s logic, he has just been stupid, because he’d been bothering with the Chinese whilst the Bulgarians and the Romanians could have done a cheaper job for him.

    Investigation too complicated

    This very statement about Bulgaria and Romania currently being cheaper than China also proves that Bike Europe does not understand what a dumping case is. It is a trade defence instrument, to defend European trade against illegal trade practices from outside Europe. Dumping is an illegal trade practice, anti-dumping measures are not to be abused as a political tool to protect European economy and European employment. To implement anti-dumping measures, there must be sufficient proof of dumping and of injury to the EU Industry and a causal link between the two. In the past year, Bike Europe has never bothered to really investigate the case, let alone to actually ask those companies that were allegedly injured how that injury manifested itself. Whenever I suggested such investigation, I got told the case was too complicated.

    However, the case does not appear to be too complicated for Bike Europe to conclude, with EBMA, that the best solution is to produce in Europe. Unfortunately, the White Paper does lack a few details. Just to mention one: it does not explain how to cope with the import of parts from China. The White Paper does have a story about SKD and CKD but says absolutely nothing about the enormous problems and chaos resulting from the fact that customs all over Europe are unaware of the fact that bicycle parts are exempted from 48.5% anti-circumvention duty if used for the assembly of electric bicycles. The White Paper says something about circumvention but circumvents the issue of who will be able to deal with anti-circumvention on component parts for electric bicycles. It is much more interested in warning against illegal transhipments.

    LEVA-EU is working on these issues and providing its members with the necessary information and advice. LEVA-EU is also considering the next steps in this case because anti-circumvention on components for e-bikes will have an even more detrimental impact on the European e-bike sector. LEVA-EU does not believe in the Europeans against the Chinese, LEVA-EU believes in people: in Europe, in China, in Vietnam, in Malaysia, …. This world needs solidarity, mutual respect and cooperation, it certainly does not need yet another blame game.

    You can download the White Paper here: https://www.bike-eu.com/whitepapers

    If you need advice and assistance with dealing with the duties, contact LEVA-EU: leva-eu@telenet.be, tel. +32 9 233 60 05.

    This article is my personal opinion.

    Annick Roetynck

  8. 60 European SMEs request Commissioner Malmström to act against unsubstantiated dumping allegations

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    No less than 60 European SMEs from 13 different EU member states have sent a motivated request to Trade Commissioner Malmström. In the letter, the importing companies explain why the Commissioner should review the Commission’s intention to impose up to 79.3% duties on import of electric bicycles from China. The 60 companies label this plan as “an extremely severe punishment for unsubstantiated dumping allegations”.

    The request of the 60 SMEs is being supported by another 27 European companies that are active in the E-bike sector but don’t import electric bicycles from China. They are European producers of components, accessories, LEVs other than e-bikes, but also distributors, dealers, service providers, … All 87 European signatories together employ 1,419 people. The letter has received further support from non-European companies active in the e-bike sector as well as from Chinese e-bike assemblers. The signatories’ list holds a total of 176 names but is confidential.

    Unsubstantiated dumping allegations

    Dumping measures must always be founded upon three pillars: dumping on the EU market, injury to the EU producers and a causal link between the two. The most important argument for this request to Commissioner Malmström is the fact that the Commission has been unable to establish injury. On the contrary, the Commission itself has established economic performance indicators, which show that the EU producers are fit and healthy[i]:

    • Sales volume: + 21%
    • Production volume: + 29%
    • Production capacity: + 35%
    • Employment: + 40%
    • Labour costs: -10%
    • Profitability: + 25%
    • Investments: + 77%
    • Return on investment: + 103%

    The only extremely weak argument for the Commission to claim injury is the fact that the industry profitability was 3.4% in the investigation period (Sept. ’16 – Sept. ’17), whilst the Commission feels it should be 4.3% as it was in 2015.

    Abuse of TDI

    The 60 importers conclude that the Commission intends to impose duties up to 79.3% in order to allow the EU industry (31 companies according to the Commission) to increase its profits by a meagre 0.9% (percentage of sales turnover) at the expense of an estimated 150 European SMEs. According to the letter writers, this calls into question the whole economic efficacy of imposing such duties, resulting in extremely high costs and a huge impact on both Union importers and consumers, whilst the benefit to the Union Industry is outright marginal.

    The group warns the Commissioner that final duties will have an immensely negative effect on the whole European e-bike sector. Therefore, they call upon her to reconsider the proposed measures, which will only be for the benefit of a handful of EU companies “who are abusing a trade defence instrument to disturb the market and upset competition”.

    Final judgment

    On 18 December, the EU member state representatives in the Trade Defence Instruments Committee will meet to give their final judgment on the Commission’s proposal. The 60 SMEs have sent the same request to their respective representatives in the TDI Committee. The decision of the Committee on final measures comes under the examination procedure. This means that the committee’s opinion is delivered by a qualified majority (55% of member states representing at least 65% of EU population). All aspects of this Committee’s meetings are confidential.

    This letter marks the final effort of the Collective of European Importers of Electric Bicycles supported by LEVA-EU to fight the Commission’s proposal for the imposition of dumping duties. The Collective will now await the Commission’s final decision, announced for January 2019, upon which they will confer on potential further actions.

    [i] PP 14-16 of the AD643 General Disclosure Document

  9. European Commission’s duties on e-bikes to destroy European SMEs

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    Last week’s General Disclosure Document outlines duties of up to 79.3% ad valorem for e-bikes imported from China. The move will threaten further development of clean mobility, lead to supply shortages and price increases, and destroy the livelihood of
    dozens of European importing SMEs.

    The Commission’s draft decision (GDD) constitutes the preamble to definitive duties due before the end of the year. LEVA-EU and the Collective of European Importers of Electric Bicycles have systematically decried this unfair and absurd case rigged with several
    fundamental inconsistencies:

    •  There is no proof of injury, and the threat of injury does not justify the imposition of duties. The Commission examined the EU industry performance in the period 2014-2017, finding +28% production volume, +34% production capacity, +20% sales volumes, +40% employment for the EU industry (GDD pp. 14-16). The loss of market share is the only argument the Commission would have, but this
      argument is based on allegedly illegally obtained Chinese statistics.
    • The Commission will hit dozens of European SMEs for the minimal profit increase of European manufacturers. The only reason why the Commission is imposing the duties is because the European e-bike industry had a profitability of 3.4% in 2017, instead of 4.3%, which is a target profit randomly decided on by the Commission (GDD Recital 165). What’s more, the Commission openly states (GDD Recital 141) its willingness to sacrifice what they call “small importers” for this purpose.
    • There is a wilful misinterpretation of survey data by the Commission. An online survey conducted by LEVA-EU showed that the proceedings were causing EU importers considerable damage. LEVA-EU collected further and more detailed information on this damage from 14 European importers in the Collective. From all this, LEVA-EU estimated that the ongoing proceedings alone had caused the European importers €90 to €100 million unanticipated costs on top of the provisional duties. This was presented to the Commission at a hearing, but in the GDD the Commission published a completely false report on these surveys. This allowed the
      Commission to come to the distorted conclusion that adverse effects on importers would be mitigated by the availability of e-bikes from other markets (GDD Recital 138), a fundamentally flawed conclusion.

    LEVA-EU Manager Annick Roetynck stated: “We strongly condemn the Commission’s findings. This case was started because EU “manufacturers” are unable to cope with changing distribution patterns and growing competition. They are only looking to close the
    market, and the Commission is helping them even though there is no dumping and clearly no injury to European manufacturers. If the Commission goes ahead with the proposed duties, this will exacerbate the damage already done to European importers and mark the
    start of dark days for the whole European electric bicycle sector, EU climate targets, and for all EU citizens who are using or intend to use an electric bike.

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