NMMA Urges Action on E.U. Tariff

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The National Marine Manufacturers Association is urging the Biden administration to take immediate action on the European Union’s retaliatory tariff on American-built boats and engines.

Leading up to today’s hearing on the administration’s trade agenda, NMMA implored the White House, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and Ambassador Katherine Tai, the U.S. Trade Representative, to come to more favorable terms with the E.U.

The 25 percent tariff, which went into effect in 2018, is slated to double June 1.

NMMA president Frank Hugelmeyer said there is no question the tariffs have been harmful to the U.S. marine industry.

“The recreational boating industry has seen a 42 percent decrease in exports to the European Union since 2018, following the introduction of U.S. tariffs on aluminum and steel and the E.U.’s subsequent retaliatory tariff on boats and engines — an astounding decline that will unfortunately only worsen if Washington doesn’t act swiftly,” Hugelmeyer said in a statement.

Sailfish Boats president and CEO Rob Parmentier in April told Soundings Trade Only that demand for U.S.-built boats was significant before the 25 percent tariff went into effect.

“One of the strong suits in my business life is distribution, and I keep in contact on European distribution,” Parmentier said. “They want our boats. [But] no one’s going to pay 25 percent more — or, for that matter, 50 percent more come June 1. I definitely keep in contact with [European dealers], but it’s a dead end unless that tariff gets removed.”

Contact NMMA director of federal government relations Clay Crabtree at ccrabtree@nmma.org for more information.

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