Tesla Sues Trump Administration Over Tariffs On Chinese Imports

September 24, 2020 4:28 am

Beijing (PingWest)—Tesla has filed a lawsuit against US President Donald Trump's administration, aiming to end the tariffs imposed on certain parts imported from China.

The electric car maker wants the court to declare two batches of Trump administration tariffs to be void, and refund Tesla the tariffs it paid with interest.

The specific tariffs involved are called List 3 and List 4. List 3 came into effect in 2018 and currently imposes a 25% tariff on $200 billion of imported goods imported from China. List 4 came into effect in 2019 and includes a 7.5% tariff on $120 billion of Chinese imports.

Both lists contain hundreds of very specific items, from raw materials to electronic components. 

Tesla claimed that the Trump administration's tariffs were "arbitrary, capricious and abuse of discretion." “Increased tariffs on this particular part cause economic harm to Tesla, through the increase of costs and impact to profitability,” the company wrote in its waiver request. “Due to the complexity of the Model 3 Car Computer and the demanding timelines necessary for Tesla’s exponential growth, Tesla is unable to find another manufacturer to meet our requirements.”

In 2019, US trade officials rejected Tesla’s bid for relief on 25% tariffs on the Model 3′s car computer, citing that it uses technologies strategically important to Chinese national security programs.