Trump hits out as Harley-Davidson shifts motorbike production overseas over EU tariffs

Donald Trump says he is "surprised" Harley-Davidson is moving production of EU-bound motorbikes out of the USA.

It is doing it to avoid tariffs in an escalating trade dispute started by the US president.

The European Union began rolling out tariffs on American imports like bourbon, peanut butter and orange juice last week.

The EU tariffs on €3.4bn (€2.9bn) of US products are in retaliation over duties the Trump administration is imposing on European steel and aluminium.

The US President took to Twitter to hit out at the motorcycle manufacturer saying: "Surprised that Harley-Davidson, of all companies, would be the first to wave the White Flag.

"I fought hard for them and ultimately they will not pay tariffs selling into the E.U., which has hurt us badly on trade, down $151 Billion.

"Taxes just a Harley excuse - be patient!"

The maker of the iconic American motorcycle said in a regulatory filing that EU tariffs on its motorcycles exported from the US jumped between 6% and 31%, which translates into an additional, incremental cost of about $2,200 (€1,886) per average motorcycle exported from the US to the EU.

“Harley-Davidson maintains a strong commitment to US-based manufacturing which is valued by riders globally,” the company said in prepared remarks.

“Increasing international production to alleviate the EU tariff burden is not the company’s preference, but represents the only sustainable option to make its motorcycles accessible to customers in the EU and maintain a viable business in Europe. Europe is a critical market for Harley-Davidson.”

- Digital Desk & PA

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