Tesla Electric Semis Make Their Inaugural Run Hauling Cargo

Gladys Abbott
March 10, 2018

"Do you think the US & China should have equal & fair rules for cars?", Musk tweeted. First, he explained to the president how the USA places a 2.5 percent tariff on cars imported to the U.S. from China, while China places a 25 percent tariff on United States imports.

On Twitter, Musk complained this was unfair since there are "five 100 [percent] China-owned EV auto companies in the USA", (presumably referring to startups like NIO, Faraday Future, SF Motors, and Byton).

Most large USA vehicle companies already have manufacturing facilities in China, along with large sales.

Musk's lobbying is also a sign of his frustration over struggling to get a deal done with Shanghai's government to assemble cars in China. Unlike other auto makers that have reluctantly given in to China's demands, Tesla wants to own a factory outright.

He then added that he had raised this issue with the Obama administration but "nothing happened".

"Just want a fair outcome, ideally where tariffs/rules are equally moderate", Musk tweeted. "Nothing more. Hope this does not seem unreasonable", he added.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk responded to a tweet from President Donald Trump with a rant about China on Thursday.

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Musk's electric vehicle company, Telsa, has long has China in its sights.

China requires overseas automakers to form joint ventures with local manufacturers in which the foreign companies are capped at 50 per cent ownership.

President Trump has come under fire from both Republicans and Democrats for his announcement on tariffs last week, which would see foreign-made steel imports be taxed at 25 percent and aluminum be taxed at 10 percent. President Trump was well received during his visit to China earlier this year and notes this by saying that USA relations with China are very good and that he looked forward to seeing what ideas they came up with.

Musk also said he was "against import duties in general, but the current rules make things very hard. They've known it for years, they never did anything about it".

"I don't know if you saw last - with Elon - with the rocket boosters where they're coming back down", Trump told reporters.

'To me, that was more wonderful than watching the rocket go up because I've never seen that before. Musk previously served on Trump's advisory council.

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