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Old 07-09-2020, 12:26 PM   #1
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Tariffs on Chinese built boats?

Does anyone know what the current tariffs are on boats made in China imported into the US? My read of the user-hostile bureaucratese on line is that the 'special' tariff imposed by Trump is 30%, plus the previous 1.5% import duty. Is that correct? I haven't seen anything since then rescinding the tariff.

Thank you!
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Old 07-10-2020, 02:38 PM   #2
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If anyone is interested, someone at the NMMA got back to me and told me the current tariff on boats made in China is 25%, plus the standard 1.5% import duty.

There are two possible exemptions to the 25% tariff. One in based on boat size and weight:

(79) Motorboats with displacement hulls of reinforced fiberglass and wood, each motorboat measuring not less than 14.47 m and not more than 36.57 m in length and weighing not less than 28 t and not more than 363 t, powered by inboard engines, other than inboard/outdrive (described in statistical reporting number 8903.92.0065).

and the other vague, nebulous language:

(a) Whether the particular product is available only from China and specifically whether the particular product and/or a comparable product is available from sources in the United States and/or third countries.
(b) Whether the imposition of additional duties on the particular product would cause severe economic harm to the requestor or other U.S. interests.
(c) Whether the particular product is strategically important or related to ‘‘Made in China 2025’’ or other Chinese industrial programs.

Hmmm.... seems crystal clear to me. Doesn't sound like there were any lobbyists influencing this regulation at all. Nope... no special interest groups had anything to do with crafting the potential exclusion language based on size, weight, and material.
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Old 07-10-2020, 08:51 PM   #3
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I'm wondering if the Chinese government is paying all or part of the tariff? There are a number of areas where the government is paying to keep China competitive and their people working.

Ted
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Old 07-11-2020, 05:44 AM   #4
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So power boats between 47' and 120' are exempt? Very interesting. I'm guessing the builders got that slipped in after the whole tariff thing got started.
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Old 07-11-2020, 08:25 AM   #5
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Are there many boats still being manufactured in China? I would think that just the cost of transporting them to the U.S. would kill most sales and I don't think the Russians are still rich. It seems like Europeans are leaning toward Italian designs.

Just a thought.

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Old 07-11-2020, 08:45 AM   #6
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At least Selene and Nordhavn ( excepted the N41 built in Turkey) are built in Zuhai for Selene and Xiamen for Nordhavn

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Originally Posted by Pete Meisinger View Post
Are there many boats still being manufactured in China? I would think that just the cost of transporting them to the U.S. would kill most sales and I don't think the Russians are still rich. It seems like Europeans are leaning toward Italian designs.

Just a thought.

pete
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Old 07-11-2020, 09:01 AM   #7
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I'm wondering if the Chinese government is paying all or part of the tariff? There are a number of areas where the government is paying to keep China competitive and their people working.

Ted
I don't know about any other goods. I would imagine the Chinese government might want to step in with iPhone or other electronics production, but I don't know if that is happening.

I don't think it's happening with pleasure boats. One company I talked with simply added the tariff to the price. The other one I was most interested in (and pretty much ready to move forward with) doesn't do anything with the tariff, it's all on the US purchaser to pay.

I would always much prefer to 'buy US'. Unfortunately, a US made new boat in the size I would like (38-42 ft) is out of my budget. Buying 'American' would mean getting a much smaller boat. This tariff is of course complete nonsense. It's not 'punishing' Chinese companies by making them pay it as Trump says it is. It's punishing US consumers by forcing them to either pay more for the same product, or not buying the product. It is hurting Chinese companies by reducing their sales, but not by forcing them to pay the full tariff.

Oh well... back to the used boat listings.
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Old 07-11-2020, 12:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick14 View Post
It's not 'punishing' Chinese companies by making them pay it as Trump says it is. It's punishing US consumers by forcing them to either pay more for the same product, or not buying the product. It is hurting Chinese companies by reducing their sales, but not by forcing them to pay the full tariff.

Oh well... back to the used boat listings.
I don't think it was about making the Chinese pay, it was about leveling the playing field and balancing trade. The Chinese have a bad habit of selling below cost to eliminate competition and then raising prices in the absence of competition. This is part of the problem the USA pharmaceutical industry has where most of the base materials come from China now. The net result has seen a number of companies seek manufacturing out of China (such as Nordhavn). The USA is far too dependent on China as we saw during the first round of Covid with PPE and ventilators. Sorry it's having an adverse effect on your boat purchase. Maybe your manufacturer will seek to move construction to a different country as Nordhavn did with the 41.

Ted
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Old 07-11-2020, 04:49 PM   #9
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So power boats between 47' and 120' are exempt? Very interesting. I'm guessing the builders got that slipped in after the whole tariff thing got started.
Which totally benefits the super-rich who can afford seven/eight-figure boats.
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Old 07-11-2020, 04:55 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Pete Meisinger View Post
..........It seems like Europeans are leaning toward Italian designs.

Just a thought.

pete
Also the big French and German popular/mass produced yacht manufacturers have diversified into power boats, and along with Spain, UK and the Scandinavian countries they keep up plenty of production to supply the demand.

I was told at the height of the Italian boat building industry there were 240 builders.
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Old 07-11-2020, 05:12 PM   #11
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At least the govt has not pulled a "Jimmy Carter" and put a luxury tax on all new boats. That caused many US boat builders out of business and the unemployment of skilled craftsman.
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Old 07-11-2020, 05:24 PM   #12
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At least the govt has pulled a "Jimmy Carter" and put a luxury tax on all new boats.
Bill Clinton and Congress repealed the federal luxury tax on boats. It expired January 2003.
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Old 07-11-2020, 05:51 PM   #13
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In case you don't know, the top 5% in this country are paying almost 60% of the taxes and the bottom 50% are paying less than 4%. We may not live in a socialist utopia, but the federal government manages to redistribute a fair amount to those in need.

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Diver, I think that '5% ... paying almost 60% of the taxes' is a bit low.
May I suggest that "60%" is closer to 80+%
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Old 07-11-2020, 05:57 PM   #14
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My point was, that luxury tax almost devastated the boat building industry in the US. A classic case of a luxury tax failing to achieve the desired effect of generating revenue.
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Old 07-11-2020, 06:00 PM   #15
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I'm wondering if the Chinese government is paying all or part of the tariff? There are a number of areas where the government is paying to keep China competitive and their people working.

Ted
The Chinese do not pay ANY part of an import tariff. The Ameican buyer pays the tariff when the boat is imported, well actually the importer pays it and then passes it along to the buyer.
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Old 07-11-2020, 06:13 PM   #16
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At least Selene and Nordhavn ( excepted the N41 built in Turkey) are built in Zuhai for Selene and Xiamen for Nordhavn

Several Nordhavn models are built in Taiwan too. Hampton's are China too. Also North Pacific. And I think a bunch more.
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Old 07-11-2020, 06:15 PM   #17
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It's always dangerous to get into political discussions,
So why start? Especially over an issue that is International in scope.

Tariffs are extremely transparent if one is seriously wanting to buy a new build Chinese made vessel, simply ask the builders. US, Canadian, Australian etc Import taxes and applicable sales taxes are likewise part of the negotiations. Thus the port of entry and flag of registry become important especially as the boat size and cost increases.

Many years ago Taiwan became a major builder of sizable vessels. For many reasons including business 101, Taiwanese builds are hugely popular.
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Old 07-11-2020, 06:23 PM   #18
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At least the govt has not pulled a "Jimmy Carter" and put a luxury tax on all new boats. That caused many US boat builders out of business and the unemployment of skilled craftsman.

Actually, it was Bush who enacted the 10% luxury tax in '91, and repealed by Clinton in '93
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Old 07-11-2020, 07:54 PM   #19
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Mconaghys,
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Old 07-11-2020, 08:04 PM   #20
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It does mainly benefit Nordhavn, which apart from the new N41, manufacturing yard is in China.

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Which totally benefits the super-rich who can afford seven/eight-figure boats.
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