SEMA's International department has worked with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to gain approval for another a year-long waiver for members to measure and test fit products for the Toyota HiLux.
Nearly 25% of buyers attending the SEMA Show reside outside the United States. Show attendees are invited to participate in three interactive sessions regarding emerging international markets where top specialty-equipment distributors and retailers will discuss business challenges and opportunities and identify the best-selling products for street-performance, off-roading and other growing niches.
In the past, the creation of an Interest-Charge Domestic International Sales Corporation (IC-DISC) has allowed U.S. manufacturers from a number of industries to greatly reduce the amount of tax paid on their exports—and the automotive industry has been no exception. For example, tax specialist alliantgroup recently helped one company that produces LED lights for a variety of motor vehicles receive $235,600 in tax savings on their exports. Another company that creates fabrics and composites for automotive applications was eligible to receive $539,000 in tax dollars for its IC-DISC.
An Increasingly Popular Regional Destination for U.S. Automotive Specialty-Equipment ProductsWith an estimated population of 42 million, Central America is an increasingly important regional market for U.S. goods. The Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) eliminates trade barriers among the seven signatories, which include the United States, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. Before this regional trade pact, tariffs on U.S. autos and parts to the region had averaged from about 4% to 9% and even up to 30% on certain products. Most of these import taxes disappeared immediately with CAFTA-DR approval, and the rest will be eliminated by 2015.
SEMA will host its annual Installation Banquet & Gala Fundraiser on Friday, July 26, at the Sheraton Fairplex Hotel & Conference Center in Pomona, California. The annual event is well attended by automotive professionals and serves as a swearing-in ceremony for the incoming Board of Directors, while honoring the newest SEMA Hall of Fame inductees.
U.S. Acting Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank today presented the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) with the President's "E" Award for Export Service at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. The "E" Awards are the highest recognition any U.S. entity may receive for making a significant contribution to the expansion of U.S. exports.
A growing number of Chinese are looking to explore their country’s rougher regions by going off-road, and Jeep sales in China are surging. But China’s terrain is apparently rougher than that found in the United States—or perhaps Chinese drivers are just more radical—because U.S.-built Jeeps are not durable enough for China, an engineer with Chrysler in China told SEMA. That could be an opportunity for SEMA members.
SEMA News—July 2011
Rough Chinese Terrain Creates Market for U.S. Specialty Products
SEMA Provides Low-cost Innovative Program for U.S. Manufacturers to Meet One on One With Top Chinese Buyers
Scott Wood couldn’t have imagined that being named the Time magazine 2010 Dealer of the Year would be his ticket to China, but it was. Wood, who owns Chevrolet and Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep dealerships in the small town of Batesville, Arkansas, was invited to China to give a presentation to Chinese car dealers on selling accessories in dealerships. Wood sells quite a few Jeep accessories, so he naturally illustrated his presentation with examples of Mopar and aftermarket-branded Jeep accessories.
SEMA News—June 11
Chinese Car Dealers Selling Aftermarket Accessories?
An often-overlooked resource for SEMA members seeking new overseas markets for their products are export management companies (EMCs). A growing number of SEMA members are already selling their products directly overseas, many with great success. But an even larger number are not fully tapping their export potential.