The EU raised an existing tariff it had on the company's motorcycles by nearly five times in retaliation for the U.S.' tariffs on EU aluminum and steel. Among the items subject to a new 25 percent tariff are orange juice, whisky and motorcycles.
Surprised that Harley-Davidson, of all companies, would be the first to wave the White Flag. This would effectively allow the company to import motorcycles into Europe without having to face an overall tariff of 31 percent. On Wednesday, Trump again took to Twitter to urge the company not to move any of its operations overseas and warning "we won't forget" the decision.
President Donald Trump renewed his attacks on motorcycle brand Harley-Davidson on Wednesday, laying into the company on Twitter.
"Early this year Harley-Davidson said they would move much of their plant operations in Kansas City to Thailand".
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He accused India of charging tariffs as high as 100% on imported American products and called for them to be removed.
"In this administration, our allegiance will be to the American workers and to American businesses, like Harley-Davidson, that were very strong in the 1980s and I remember this - you were victims of trading abuse - big trading abuse, where they were dumping all sorts of competitors all over the place", Trump said.
House Speaker Paul Ryan, whose district is home to some of Harley-Davidson's facilities, also pointed to the company as an American firm that would be a victor from tax reform. Trump then threatened the company "will be taxed like never before" if they follow through with the move.
It was a stark contrast from February 2017, when Harley-Davidson executives visited Trump at the White House, even participating in a photo-op with Trump. But union officials are the ones who claimed the jobs were being shifted to Thailand.
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While it will take some time to shift production overseas, the BBC reports Harley-Davidson won't pass the increased costs onto consumers as it doesn't want to jeopardize sales.
"We're the bank that everybody wants to steal from and plunder and can't be that way anymore", said the United States president. "Their employees and customers are already very angry at them", he said.
But Harley-Davidson's plight in Europe drew fresh interest from French Parliament member Eric Straumann, who contacted Levatich to propose a new factory on the French-German border in Alsace.
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