In a joint statement released yesterday, the American-based Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA) and the European Association of Automotive Suppliers (CLEPA) voiced support for free and fair trade, access to raw and finished materials and harmonized safety and environmental standards that will allow motor vehicle parts manufacturers to remain competitive in a global marketplace. The statement is seen to underline the positive impact of international trade, in times of rising concerns about globalization and protectionism.
“Suppliers need open, free and fair trade for access to raw materials, finished components and customers,” the statement says. “Illegal regional or national subsidies on goods or production, restrictive non-tariff barriers to trade (including testing and marking requirements) and lack of participation in the world market limits both the domestic and global competitiveness of all suppliers.”
MEMA and CLEPA also call for trade policies that address trade distortions and preserve open markets while maintaining and improving existing agreements. The two trade organizations also advocate for mutual recognition of vehicle safety and emissions regulations in the U.S. and the EU, as well as to work within the framework of the United Nations’ World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations (WP.29) to establish safety and environmental global technical regulations. Harmonized standards reduce costs while promoting advancements in new and innovative technologies, the statement says.
“These actions serve to protect the international rule of law and strengthen the opportunities for all participants to thrive in a fair and free global marketplace,” the statement says.
“The international motor vehicle parts supplier industry is leading the way in technological advances that will enable safer, smarter and more efficient vehicles,” said MEMA President and CEO Steve Handschuh. “We are at the cusp of the biggest technological changes in 100 years. It is critical that free and open trade facilitate our ability to innovate and compete in the global marketplace.”
“Our sector operates in a highly integrated supply chain, with components often crossing borders multiple times, to become a finished part or end up in a vehicle,” said CLEPA Secretary General Sigrid de Vries. “Automotive suppliers need easy and fair access to foreign markets to evolve competitively, underpinning growth and employment around the world.”