Will the EU Tariffs on Chinese Electric Vehicles Also Hit EU Firms?

On 12 June, the European Commission announced the first provisional decision under its anti-subsidy inquiry for battery electric vehicles (BEV) assembled in China. Albeit initially driven by Western foreign direct investment, Chinese car producers have become prominent producers of battery electric vehicles. This note asks if the imposition of import tariffs may also affect EU producers and reflects the discussion against a trade context. A 2023 analysis reveals that 55 percent of BEV sold in the EU and manufactured in China are produced by EU carmakers through joint ventures, a decline from 68 percent in 2022. Consequently, these companies will be directly affected by the tariffs. However, the suppliers to these OEM are predominantly located in China (85 percent). This indicates that EU suppliers are considerably less affected than Chinese firms.