On 19 January 2021, 26 Members of the European Parliament wrote to Oliver Várhelyi, the European Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations about concerns relating to “growing Chinese influence in Serbia and the impending environmental damage resulting from several heavy industrial projects in Serbia by Chinese owned companies”. The group are particularly interested in scrutinising Serbia’s apparently “generous” subsidies and environmental compliance protocols.
Last September, Bridgestone announced it would close its tyre production facility in Béthune, France during in 2021. The municipal council of Béthune-Bruay now claims the tyre maker didn’t fully honour the commitments it agreed to back in 2007, when the municipality contributed towards a 32-million-euro investment in the plant. It is therefore demanding that Bridgestone returns the subsidies it invested.
Following the news that the Japanese tyremaker has received free land as part of the state support package for its Serbia tyre plant, the country’s state aid commission has approved the allocation of 41 million euros ($48.7 million) in government financing to Toyo to support the construction of the new factory in Indjija, northern Serbia.
The Serbian state is set to give Japanese tyre manufacturer Toyo 637,455 square metres of land worth roughly 3 million euros for its newest factory. According to a Serbian State Aid Control Commission decision, the countries Tax Administration calculated that – based on a land valuation of 5 euros per square metre, Toyo will have to employ 523 workers indefinitely by 2023.
Authorities in India are conducting an investigation into alleged subsidies on truck and bus tyres imported from the People’s Republic of China. According to a document released on Wednesday by the Directorate General of Trade Remedies, a department of India’s Department of Commerce, the investigation is taking place in response to a submission filed by local industry representative the Automotive Tyre Manufacturer’s Association (ATMA) on behalf of tyre makers Apollo Tyres, J. K. Tyre & Industries, MRF and Ceat. Should the allegations be verified, the department will recommend implementing countervailing duties.
Recent published articles have led to uncertainty regarding duties upon new and retreaded bus and truck tyres originating in the People’s Republic of China. On 13 July, the European Commission announced its decision not to impose anti-subsidy measures during its ongoing investigation into these products. This decision reflects the Commission’s practice of not simultaneously imposing provisional anti-dumping and anti-subsidy measures prior to reaching a final decision on the matter.
Russian car manufacturers have requested government support in order to help maintain staffing levels during the ongoing Russian financial crisis. According a report in Russia’s Kommersant, Kamaz, AvtoVAZ and Sollers have filed requests to their respective regional governments to access funds to help keep employment for workers.