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Industry USA News

Industry associations, including the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA) and the Auto Care Association, joined suppliers at a U.S. Dept. of Commerce meeting to testify against potential Section 232 tariffs on motor vehicles and auto parts.

“The importation of motor vehicle parts is not a risk to our national security,” said Ann Wilson, MEMA senior vice president of government affairs during the testimony. “However, the imposition of tariffs is a risk to our economic security, jeopardizing supplier jobs and investments in the United States.

“To put it bluntly, if we lose the opportunity to develop and manufacture new technologies in the U.S., we will have little opportunity to recoup these losses for a decade,” she stated.

Wilson was among 45 representatives of global and U.S. companies, labor and other organizations scheduled to speak at the hearing. The Section 232 investigation into motor vehicles and auto parts was ordered by the Trump administration in May. These tariffs, if they take effect, could seriously impact the motor vehicle parts supplier industry. This week’s hearing is part of the administration’s investigation of whether imported automobiles and automotive parts pose national security risks.

In her testimony, Wilson cited MEMA’s recent survey of its supplier members, calling the results “deeply troubling.” She noted, “Almost 80 percent of the respondents said that a 20 percent tariff on imported automotive parts would have a net negative impact on their businesses.” MEMA survey respondents indicated they would cut U.S. jobs, cut or delay U.S. R&D investment, shift production outside of the U.S. and/or modify sourcing,” said Wilson.