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China to cut tariff on imported vehicles
Automotive News China | 2017/11/14

BEIJING -- China says it will gradually lower tariffs on imported vehicles as part of a package of trade agreements announced during U.S. President Donald Trump¡¯s visit to Beijing last week.

China also will allow foreign automakers to set up wholly owned subsidiaries to produce electric vehicles in free trade zones, Vice Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao said at a press conference in Beijing Friday.

Zhu did not indicate when China will reduce a 25 percent tariff on imported vehicles. However, limits on foreign EV production will be eased fairly quickly. 

Before next June, China will start to ease restrictions on foreign ownership of EV ventures, Zhu noted.

Under existing rules, foreign automakers must form joint ventures with local partners to produce vehicles in China. Foreign automakers may own no more than 50 percent of the partnerships.

To promote foreign investment, Beijing opened its first free trade zone in Shanghai in 2013. To date, the government has established 11 such zones across the country, of which six are in coastal areas. 

Tesla Inc. has confirmed that it is in talks with Shanghai¡¯s municipal government to build EVs in the city¡¯s free trade zone. 

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