Piaggio Comments on Proposed Tariff

December 10, 2008
Courtesy of Piaggio Group

Piaggio Group Americas, Inc. strongly opposes the recently proposed retaliatory action in conjunction with the EU-Beef Hormone trade dispute. According to a notice issued by the office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), revisions are being considered to the list of meat and food products that currently have a retaliatory tariff imposed on them. Inexplicably, USTR is considering extending retaliatory tariffs to European motorcycles between 51cc and 500cc displacement. The recommendation is to add a 100% ad valorem tax to European-manufactured motorcycles and scooters that meet this displacement category – an action whose chief victims would be Piaggio Group Americas, the New York, NY headquartered firm that is responsible for the Vespa, Piaggio, Aprilia and Moto Guzzi brands in the U.S. market, as well as its network of dealers and customers.

Piaggio Group Americas, Inc. President and CEO Paolo Timoni has the following statement to make about these proposed changes to the EU-Beef Hormone dispute sanctions:

“We urge USTR not to punish the U.S. employees of a healthy and growing personal transportation company, along with the 400+ U.S. dealers and employees that retail our scooters and small displacement motorcycles, when the only focus of this trade dispute is an agricultural product. We also urge USTR not to punish the American consumer who in rapidly increasing numbers is choosing to add these clean-running, fuel-efficient machines to their transportation fleets in order to reduce U.S. fuel consumption, foreign oil dependence and today’s massive congestion and environmental issues. Finally, we urge USTR not to impose measures that would quickly force Piaggio Group Americas and a significant number of its dealers out of business.

“The intricacies of retaliatory tariff measures are not our bailiwick – but serving the thousands of American consumers who have a passion for our products and the dedicated U.S. dealers and partners who retail and service them most certainly is. We encourage USTR to find more appropriate and relevant measures to settle its beef with the European Union.”

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