The Obama administration has approved a 35% tariff on Chinese-made tires, effective in two weeks. The tariff will decrease to 25% over the next two years. Before you start stockpiling Cheng Shin and Maxxis tires, note that the tariff appears to only target automobile and light truck tires, and it’s unclear if it will include Taiwanese tires. So even if it does include scooter tires, it may turn out to be good news, because it’ll probably only hurt the cheapo importers.
The Chinese tire industry has ballooned in recent years, and U.S. tire industry officials blame China for lost jobs and sales. But as of 2008, only two U.S. tire companies were among the world’s top ten (#2 Goodyear and #9 Cooper) so it seems strange to single out China when Bridgestone, Michelin, Continental, Hankook, Kumho, Pirelli, and Yokohama are all more direct competitors, and sell OEM tires for cars sold in the U.S. (Perhaps they’re all manufacturing in China, but if that’s the case, it seems impossible that Goodyear and Cooper aren’t.) Now’s your chance, Coker, how about some scooter-size gumwalls?
(Thanks for the link, Eric.)