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Canada mulls Chinese EV tariff following U.S. move

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his trade and industry ministers say Canada is investigating the notion of hiking tariffs on imported electric vehicles from China following a massive tax hike by the Americans earlier this month.

Chinese brands are not a major player in Canada’s EV market but imports from China have exploded in the last year as Tesla switched from U.S. factories for its Canadian sales to it’s manufacturing plant in Shanghai.

In 2022 Canada trade data shows $84 million in imports of electric-only vehicles from China and in 2023 that soared to $2.2 billion.

President Joe Biden is quadrupling import taxes on Chinese-made EVs to 100 per cent this year because of what he called unfair subsidies for Chinese EV makers by the Chinese government.

Last fall the European Commission launched a study of unfair trade practices by China as Chinese-made EVs rapidly increased market share across Europe.

Currently, Chinese brands of EVs are not available for sale in Canada but China’s automakers are eyeing the North American market.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 26, 2024.

The Canadian Press

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