Musk Invites Trump to Prod China Over Auto Trade Practices

Musk Invites Trump to Prod China Over Auto Trade Practices

Musk Invites Trump to Prod China Over Auto Trade Practices

"That's from Elon, but everybody knows it", Trump said.

The tweets hint at Musk's frustration over struggling to get a deal done with Shanghai's government to assemble cars there.

Trump then went on to announce unspecified plans for upcoming "reciprocal taxes or "mirror taxes," again direcly addressing Musk's issue of disparity between US tariffs and those imposed by other countries". An agreement hasn't been finalized because the two sides disagree on the ownership structure for a proposed factory, people with direct knowledge of the situation have told Bloomberg News.

Musk said that the high tariffs on cars imported to China, as well as manufacturing rules in the Asian country, have made things "very difficult" for the company.

The Chinese government is pushing for the plant to be a joint venture with local partners, while Tesla wants to own the factory outright, the people said.

"No US auto company is allowed to own even 50% of their own factory in China, but there are five 100% China-owned EV auto companies in the US", Musk wrote in one of his tweets aimed at Trump.

Musk continued the thread by stating that the current discrepancy between the USA and China's tariffs on cars makes things "very difficult" and is like "competing in an Olympic race wearing lead shoes".

"We raised this with the prior administration and nothing happened", Musk wrote, after tweeting at Trump about both the import duties and joint-venture ownership rules. "Just want a fair outcome, ideally where tariffs/rules are equally moderate. Nothing more. Hope this does not seem unreasonable", he added.

Trump and Musk have a rocky history.

The Tesla chief executive officer served on two White House advisory councils before stepping down in June previous year after the president announced he would pull the USA out of the Paris climate accord, but last month, Trump tweeted his congratulations to Musk following a successful launch by Space Exploration Technologies Corp, another one of Musk's companies.

The president praised SpaceX again on Thursday morning.

He gushed about the company launching the Falcon Heavy, the world's most powerful rocket in 45 years, and landing two of its spent boosters back on the Florida coast.

Later on Thursday, Trump defied opposition from the Republican party and protests from global allies as he signed orders imposing stiff and sweeping new tariffs on imported steel (25 per cent) and aluminium (10 per cent). While company projections place Musk's total compensation at an estimated $2.6 billion, ISS said the actual amount was worth $3.7 billion.

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