On 4 May 2022 the General Court of the European Union annulled Regulation (EU) 2018/683, overturning the regimen of anti-dumping duties imposed upon truck & bus tyres imported from China. The European Commission subsequently partially re-opened its anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigation, disclosing its findings on 10 January 2023. The Commission has now published details of definitive measures.
On 19 January, the European Commission extended anti-dumping duties on aluminium road wheels from China for a further five years. The extension follows an expiry review investigation, which showed that these wheels continue to be dumped on the EU market and that industry within the European Union would suffer significant harm if the measures were allowed to lapse.
The government of Romania has approved state aid of almost 100 million euros to Nokian Tyres PLC. The tyre maker intends to establish a new factory in Oradea, and the ad hoc regional state aid will finance the costs related to the factory’s establishment and address the financing gap related to this greenfield investment.
In September Tyrepress learned from China Rubber Industry Association (CRIA) that, on 14 September, CRIA and the European Commission (EC) investigators held an online hearing on the European Commission’s renewed anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigations relating to the imports of Chinese-made truck tyres. Shortly afterwards, Tyrepress reported that Laurens Elsen, an EC investigator, said that the EC would contact EU customs to ensure that during the re-investigation, the relevant departments will not “impose” any anti-dumping and anti-subsidy measures on the tyre companies that prevail in the judgment of the European Court of Justice. However, European Commission representatives contested that interpretation, arguing that the language of levying rather than imposition is more appropriate.
The European representatives of Chinese tyre manufacturers continue to await the European Commission’s decision on the future of tariffs on truck tyres imported from the country following the European Court of Justice’s annulment of the tariffs introduced on 8 May 2018. While the EC’s deputies of the Unit DG Trade have talked about a “re-investigation” in response to Chinese representatives calling for the EC to implement fully the judgement of the ECJ, Tyres & Accessories understands that the more likely outcome is rather a recalculation of the tariffs the EC will apply, while manufacturers’ European operations are also bracing for the possibility of the backdated implementation of newly set rates. T&A asked Corrado Moglia, general manager of Triangle Tyre’s European operation, who has been representing the company’s interests in discussions with the EC, about how the situation is developing from his point of view.
The European Commission published details of the new Euro 7 standards on 10 November 2022. According to the commission, Euro 7 will “ensure cleaner vehicles on our roads and improved air quality, protecting the health of our citizens and the environment.” The transport industry has become familiar with the increasingly demanding Euro series of standards over the years. Up till now, they have focused on vehicle exhaust emissions, something that tyres can only indirectly affect through reduced rolling resistance and its impact on fuel consumption and therefore emissions. This time round however, Euro 7 brings with it standards relating to particle emissions from tyres and brakes.
Tyrepress has learned from the China Rubber Industry Association (CRIA) that on 14 September, CRIA and the European Commission investigators held an online hearing on the European Commission’s renewed anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigations relating to the imports of Chinese-made truck tyres. China’s tyre industry applied for the hearing, and the participants from China came from CRIA, tyre manufacturers and law firms.
WhiteCycle, a project coordinated by Michelin, officially got underway on 1 July with the aim of developing a circular economy for converting complex waste containing plastic textiles into high-added-value products. Co-financed by the European Commission’s Horizon Europe programme, this public/private European partnership includes 17 organisations.
A number of European industry associations, including vehicle manufacturers’ association the ACEA and wheel manufacturers’ association EUWA, have issued an “urgent call for action against the imminent risk of Europe-wide production shutdowns as a consequence of a critical shortage in the supply of magnesium from China.”
From 1 May, the new EU rules on the energy labelling of on-road tyres apply at consumer level. Updating the label first introduced for car and van tyres in 2012, the new rules require that tyres for buses and lorries must now be labelled – and offer a new pictogram, where relevant, to highlight tyres suitable for use in snow or in extreme, icy conditions.
The European Tyre and Rubber Manufacturers Association says it “welcomes” the European Commission’s ‘Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy’, which it presented yesterday. The association representing tyre makers in Europe stresses that tyres can make a “sustainable contribution” to the decarbonisation and digital transformation of EU transport system.
The European Commission’s new target of a 55 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 has been welcomed by the tyre industry. The European Tyre & Rubber Manufacturers’ Association said that the industry is ready to “ready to contribute” to the latest decarbonisation goals. The association added that its “members have been committed to reducing their CO2 footprint throughout the tyre life cycle and investing in innovative and sustainable mobility technologies for many years now.” The association was responding to European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen’s 16 September State of the Union address.
European automotive business organisations and trade unions have called on the European Commission to set out a “bold industrial recovery plan” following the Covid-19 pandemic. IndustriAll Europe, Ceemet, ACEA, CLEPA, CECRA, and ETRMA want a plan to stimulate sales and revive production, while supporting the industry’s “journey towards a carbon-neutral future, based on the Green Deal and Europe’s climate objectives.” The associations want to address fears that the recession will dwarf the effects of the 2008 financial crisis, in which it says 440,000 auto sector jobs were lost.
The European Commission has approved 3.2 billion euros of battery research and development support under EU State aid rules. The funding comes as the result of an Important Project of Common European interest (IPCEI) application jointly notified by Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Poland and Sweden to support research and innovation in the common European priority area of batteries.