Ways Donald Trump Made Harley-Davidson a Target

President Donald Trump greets Matthew Levatich, CEO of Harley Davidson Inc. outside the White House in Febr

The iconic motorcycle brand recently announced its plans to shift some of the production overseas against the imposition of steep import tariffs by the European Union, leaving US President Donald Trump "surprised".

Harley-Davidson Inc. sold nearly 40,000 motorcycles in the European Union a year ago, generating revenue second only to the United States, according to the Milwaukee company.

In a series of tweets Tuesday morning, Trump said Harley is using the European retaliatory tariffs as "an excuse" for moving manufacturing overseas.

"Harley-Davidson expects ramping up production in global plants will require incremental investment and could take at least nine to 18 months to be fully complete", the company said.

President Donald Trump has threatened motorcycle maker Harley-Davidson with a big tax hit if it moves its manufacturing to Thailand, while also accusing them of using new trade tariffs as an excuse to leave the US.

"Harley-Davidson maintains a strong commitment to USA -based manufacturing which is valued by riders globally", it said in response to the production news.

Trump has said that "trade wars are good and easy to win", but users of imported steel and aluminum already are feeling the pain of the administration's policies. In January, it said it would consolidate its Kansas City, Missouri, plant into its York, Pennsylvania, facility.

The tariffs, which took effect Friday, are retaliation for taxes President Donald Trump imposed on European Union shipments of steel and aluminum. "Taxes just a Harley excuse - be patient", he said. Harley-Davidson's preference is to manufacture within the US, but believed shifting some production "was its only sustainable choice to continue serving the EU", Wedbush's Hardiman wrote.

Trump warned Harley-Davidson that any shift in production "will be the beginning of the end". No H-Ds made in Brazil, India, or Thailand will be available here.




The administration's move to impose the tariffs came after a nine-month investigation, led by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, which found the current level of aluminum and steel imports to the USA had the "potential to threaten our national security". The company provided no details of the number of jobs that would be lost as a result of the production change.

"The EU is attempting to punish USA workers with unfair and discriminatory trade policies, and President Trump will continue to push for free, fair and reciprocal trade and hopes that the EU will join us in that", Sanders said.

"They want to make 'em over there so they don't have to pay the tariffs to ship 'em", he said. Europe is a critical market for Harley-Davidson.

Shares at Harley Davidson are down 2.40% in early morning trading.

Walker and Trump made amends, and the governor past year invited the president to take a ride on a Harley after he canceled a visit to the company's headquarters.

Our goal should always be to make America the sort of place where companies choose to do business. Shifting manufacturing closer to those markets will lower costs and help Harley-Davidson maintain its profit margins - a typical strategy among vehicle manufacturers.

In the early days of his administration Trump had embraced Harley-Davidson, which sells about 40,000 motorcycles a year in Europe, as an emblematic USA industrial firm. While Trump is now under significant pressure to relent on such imposed tariffs, it's likely the calls for a reversal will only raise in volume and in number, in the wake of quantifiable job losses linked directly to the president's trade strategies. Even Harley Davidson is not exercised over the issue and it seeks to expand its footprint overseas.

"Trump tweeted ".We are finishing our study of Tariffs on cars from the E.U.in that they have long taken advantage of the U.S.in the form of Trade Barriers and Tariffs. At a briefing Monday, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Trump was trying to undo years of trade restrictions imposed on the United States by other countries.

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