I'm surprised to hear in the speech to congress today that other countries double the cost of HDs for no reason other than to get their citizens to buy fewer of them, and more of the native bikes that need extreme helping measures to sell in their own countries.
Trump is seeking to uphold campaign promises to return lost manufacturing jobs to the U.S. The president has met with the CEOs of the traditional domestic automakers as well as the heads of Dow Chemical Co., Whirlpool Corp., Lockheed Martin Corp. and U.S. Steel Corp. all in his first two weeks in office, indicating he’ll take a hands-on role in U.S. corporate decision-making, especially if it’ll lead to job creation for middle-class Americans.
Believe it or not, as I find it really odd, but the threat of extensive protests made it unlikely that a visit to the HD factory could be anything productive and it was found to be far cheaper and more effective to have the HD executives fly to Washington DC and meet the pres at the White House and bring some Harleys.
During his speech the president mentioned that the Harley-Davidson motorcycle company faces a 100% tariff in in at least one country.
Fact check: True. The tariff, applied by India on motorcycles with engines larger than 800cc, is a full 100%, according to the International Trade Centre. Other notable countries with high tariffs on large motorcycles are Thailand, China, and Malaysia.
The US’s tariff on large motorcycles from India is 0% and can range up to 10% for other countries.
President Trump used Harley-Davidson motorcycles as a metaphor for the obstacles faced by American companies on the global market.
“I just met with officials and workers from a great American company, Harley-Davidson. In fact, they proudly displayed five of their magnificent motorcycles, made in the USA, on the front lawn of the White House,” Trump said, and he related what he said the company’s executives had told him about global tax rates.
“At our meeting, I asked them, how are you doing, how is business? They said that it's good,” he continued. “I asked them further how they are doing with other countries, mainly international sales. They told me – without even complaining because they have been mistreated for so long that they have become used to it – that it is very hard to do business with other countries because they tax our goods at such a high rate. They said that in one case another country taxed their motorcycles at 100 percent.”
“They weren't even asking for change. But I am.”