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German Vice Chancellor Rejects Trump's German Car Remarks

Donald Trump, the President-elect of the US has warned auto makers based in Germany that he will impose a tax at the border of 35% on their vehicles that are imported to the United States, a plan that has drawn sharp rebukes from Germany and hit the shares of automakers.

I would tell BMW if they want to build cars in Mexico and sell in the United States of America without a 35% tax, they can forget it. Calling BMW's planned investment in Mexico rather than U.S. "a waste of time and money", Mr Trump threatened to impose a 35 percent border tax if BMW decides to go ahead with its production plans.

In a weekend interview given jointly to Germany's biggest tabloid, Bild-Zeitung, and (somewhat incongruously), the august Times of London, Trump repeated for the first time as President-elect pretty much what he had said a thousand times as candidate a year ago.

Trump's comments are the latest that threaten actions against manufacturers who make cars in Mexico for export to the US, prompting some conciliatory gestures by the targeted companies.

Gabriel, who is also vice chancellor, suggested more self-confidence when dealing with Donald Trump. "Not too many, maybe none, you can see nothing over there, it's a one-way street", Trump said.

German carmakers employ about 33,000 workers in the USA and German automotive suppliers about 77,000 more, the VDA said.

Tariffs would make "the American auto industry worse, weaker and more expensive", according to Sigmar Gabriel, the German economy minister. Toyota Motor Corp., which plans to start producing Corolla cars at a new plant in Mexico starting in 2019, has said it'll take Trump's decisions into account in the future.

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"The production is planned for the world market", BMW said Monday in an e-mailed statement. He continued to blast Germany's auto industry as being unfair to the United States in the stated interview.

BMW plans to construct a new plant in Mexico, which is expected to cost $1 billion and employ 1,500 workers. BMW also said that it plans to build a number of plants across the world as its capacity increases.

Under pressure to deliver on campaign promises to revive U.S. industrial jobs, Trump has turned his fire on carmakers that use low-priced Mexican plants to serve the United States market. "Thus, the plant in Mexico will complement the existing three-way production sites in Germany and China".

"The interview statements of the American president-elect. caused, indeed here in Brussels, astonishment and agitation", Steinmeier said as he went from a meeting with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation chief Jens Stoltenberg to talks with European Union counterparts.

The U.S.is BMW's largest market, accounting for an estimated 20% of the group's €94 billion of annual revenues.

Donald Trump seems in no mood to relent on his war on manufacturers who make their products outside and sell in America.

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