U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk has announced the United States has requested dispute settlement consultations with the Government of China at the WTO concerning China’s auto and auto parts "export base" subsidy program.
Following are responses from the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA) and the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA).
AAIA Responds to Obama Administration’s WTO Challenge to China
BETHESDA, Md. The Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA) welcomed a thorough and objective World Trade Organization (WTO) review of the export subsidies China allegedly provides to its auto parts manufacturers.
Responding to Sunday’s announcement by U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk that the United States has requested dispute settlement consultations with the Government of China at the WTO concerning China’s auto and auto parts “export base” subsidy program, AAIA reiterated its support for the U.S. government’s efforts to confront foreign trade distorting measures, while encouraging the USTR to recognize the increasingly globally integrated nature of the automotive aftermarket and the potential for unintended consequences to a significant sector of the U.S. economy.
“AAIA is committed to fairness in the international trading system and supports efforts to ensure that WTO members abide by their commitments,” said Kathleen Schmatz, AAIA president and CEO. “We encourage the USTR to work towards a solution through the bilateral consultation phase of the WTO dispute settlement process in order to avoid a prolonged arbitration and appeal process and potential Chinese retaliation aimed at the U.S. automotive aftermarket.”
MEMA Responds to WTO Case
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. The Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA) issued the following statement in response to the Obama administration initiating a WTO case challenging China’s export subsidies to auto and auto parts manufacturers in China:
“For over a hundred years MEMA has represented America’s motor vehicle parts suppliers to enable them to grow and maintain the critical role they play in America’s economy. With an increasingly competitive global economy, suppliers and their workers are doubling their efforts to remain competitive at home and abroad where 95 percent of the world’s consumers live. This effort is undertaken in partnership with auto manufacturers, material and component suppliers, distribution and retail and other stakeholders in the global automotive industry.
MEMA supports free trade including passage last year of the Colombia, Panama and South Korea Free Trade Agreements (FTA) as well as the current Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade negotiations which seek to create a high-standard 21st century trade model that fosters fair competition and innovation.
In addition to having U.S.-based manufacturing, many MEMA members compete globally, including in China, the world’s largest automotive producer. MEMA members understand the importance of foreign markets yet also know fair trade needs to be defended in today’s international marketplace. MEMA recognizes the Administration’s many efforts to keep American businesses and workers competitive in these challenging times. MEMA will closely examine this case and how it will potentially affect MEMA’s membership.”