"There are no [trade] talks planned", European Union trade chief Cecilia Malmström said Tuesday, adding that Harley-Davidson's relocation decision was exactly the type of reaction Europe had been aiming for with its counter-tariffs.
President Trump warned Harley-Davidson on Tuesday that it will not be able to "sell back into the us without paying a big tax" after the company's decision to move production of motorcycles sold in Europe overseas amid tariff tensions.
"Increasing global production to alleviate the European Union tariff burden is not the company's preference, but represents the only sustainable option to make its motorcycles accessible to customers in the European Union and maintain a viable business in Europe", the company said in a statement.
Harley-Davidson executives visited the White House days into Trump's administration in 2017, wearing leather jackets on the South Lawn driveway as Trump examined the motorcycles they brought.
The tweets come as other companies are looking at ways to ease the hurt from the trade tariffs. Trump, echoing a top union for Harley workers, claims the company planned to shift some operations to Thailand before the tariffs were announced.
Known stable genius and president of these United States Donald J. Trump has been facing a bit of backlash lately due to his little trade war and the tariffs contained therein. "Taxes just a Harley excuse - be patient", he said.
That will make each bike about $2,200 more expensive to export, Harley said.
As U.S. customers age and loyalty to the brand wanes, Harley-Davidson has been aiming to make up for falling U.S. demand by boosting overseas sales to 50 percent of annual volume from about 43 percent.
More potential pitfalls for Harley-Davidson and other US manufacturers could be on the way.
The European Union, she alleged, is attempting to punish United States workers with unfair and discriminatory trade policies, and Trump will continue to push for free, fair and reciprocal trade in hopes that the EU will join is in that. Setting up production facilities overseas will take between nine and 18 months, the company said.
He didn't mention President Trump by name but said tariffs are "basically taxes".
Harley-Davidson did not respond to requests for comment for this story. Harley said it made a decision to build the Thailand plant after Trump pulled out from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which would have lowered import tariffs on its bikes in some of the fastest-growing motorcycle markets in Asia.
Last year, as Breitbart News reported, about 183 American workers were laid off by the motorcycle company in Kansas City and Menomonee Falls.
While that echoed the president's sentiment on Twitter, Capra told KCUR he does "not have verification" that jobs or equipment from Kansas City are destined for overseas plants. Harley-Davidson will instead absorb the cost and estimates in the short term "incremental cost for the remainder of 2018 to be approximately $30 to $45 million". The effect on Harley is staggering; duties have increased from 6% to 31%, which would raise the export cost of the average motorcycles by $2,200.
Wisconsin's elected leaders said the decision pointed to the need to expand markets. And it comes amid fears about the effects of a trade war, with USA companies concerned they'll lose access to foreign markets and pay more for raw materials.
Trump says he's getting other countries to reduce and eliminate tariffs and trade barriers, and open up closed markets.