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EU duties on electric vehicles from China, possible repercussions on European agri-food

Atlanticist policies by Ursula von der Leyen continue towards a trade war against China, which will start with the introduction of trade duties on imports of electric vehicles into the EU, and the possible repercussions on European agri-food exports.

1) EU duties on imports of Chinese electric cars

The October 4 2023 The European Commission has launched an investigation into China's state aid to its electric vehicle industry. (1)

The June 12 2024 the Brussels executive has announced the introduction of additional duties on electric vehicles arriving from China:

- up to 38,1%, in addition to the already existing duties (10-15%), starting from 4 July 2024. (2)

2) China, possible retaliation on European agri-food

China he first of all warned that any new tariff on imports into the EU will trigger a rapid response, with 'retaliatory measures' which will inevitably also affect the European agri-food sector.

The first agricultural products The European foodstuffs indicated by the Beijing government are dairy products, pork and their derivatives. The Chinese government will in fact launch an anti-dumping investigation into these categories of goods, which in 2023 represented a quarter of EU agri-food exports (as well as 2% of total exports) to the celestial empire. (3)

European exports of alcoholic beverages in China, starting from cognac (French brandy), may also be burdened by new duties, in response to those that the EU is preparing to introduce on Chinese electric vehicles.

3) European farmers, yet another damage

The outgoing commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Janusz Wojciechowski, has repeatedly called for the protection of the agri-food sector from the trade disputes in question. The damage to farmers and the EU agri-food industry was also foreseeable.

Sector representatives in turn they complain politely:

- 'the Chinese market is crucial for the European pig sector. One of the reasons is the size of China, because the volume of the Chinese market is so large that no one can ignore it.' (Joris Coenen, Belgian Meat Office, director);

- 'the Commission you must ensure that we do not take on this dispute. We don't like to get caught in the crossfire' (Ksenija Simovic, Copa-Cogeca, policy advisor for trade).

4) Concluding notes

The trade battle against China was announced in May 2024 by the United States, where a colossal tariff (100%) has already been introduced on imports of electric vehicles from China.

The 2024 European elections they also confirmed their support for the war-mongering, Russophobic and Sinophobic policies of which Ursula von der Leyen is the protagonist, with tragic effects on our economy.

European agri-food thus remains sandwiched between:

  • the energy crisis and the dependence on the USA for the supply of shale gas, whose economic (as well as environmental) costs have already paralyzed industrial development
  • the speculations of global monopolists on which the supplies of agricultural inputs (seeds, pesticides, fertilizers), as well as the commodity market (4) depend
  • unfair commercial practices and below-cost sales imposed by industrial and retail giants (physical and electronic), (5)
  • unfair competition from agricultural and food products arriving from third countries without tariff quotas or reciprocity clauses, (6) and finally
  • the progressive closure of international markets with the highest growth potential and catchment areas (BRICS).


Dario Dongo


(1) EPRS (European Parliament Research Service). EU anti-subsidy probe into electric vehicle imports from China. October 2023 https://tinyurl.com/ytk8wsyh

(2) Koen Verhelst, Antonia Zimmerman, Jürgen Klöckner. EU shocks China with EV duties of up to 38 percent. EU politician. 12.6.24 https://tinyurl.com/mtb3pu4m

(3) Chu Daye, Tao Mingyang. European Commission's tariff decision met with wide criticism. Global Times. 13.6.24 https://tinyurl.com/y32fbn6m

(4) Dario Dongo. The tentacles of finance on food sovereignty and our food. GIFT (Great Italian Food Trade).

(5) See paragraph 3 of the previous article by Dario Dongo. Sales below costs, farmers protest in France. GIFT (Great Italian Food Trade).

(6) Dario Dongo. Agriculture, stop unconditional free trade agreements. GIFT (Great Italian Food Trade).

Dario Dongo, lawyer and journalist, PhD in international food law, founder of WIISE (FARE - GIFT - Food Times) and Égalité.

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