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New Bike Makers Popping Up in Eastern Europe

Laws & Regulations

MAARSSEN, Netherlands (May 31) – New European bike makers are popping up in relatively big numbers. Especially in the Eastern part of Europe there are quite some companies that have recently started making bicycles. Since May 1, 2004 the 30.6% anti-dumping on Chinese made bicycles also became effective in the new EU member states, countries […]

MAARSSEN, Netherlands (May 31) – New European bike makers are popping up in relatively big numbers. Especially in the Eastern part of Europe there are quite some companies that have recently started making bicycles. Since May 1, 2004 the 30.6% anti-dumping on Chinese made bicycles also became effective in the new EU member states, countries like Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary and others saw new assemblers setting up shop. Most of them are not totally new to the business though: companies like 4Ever or Leader Fox (both from the Czech Republic) were importers that have shifted from sourcing to assembling bicycles. Others like the Athletic Group from China are completely new players on the ‘old continent’. This company is the first of what’s to grow into a Chinese production centre in Europe, where next to bicycles, light bulbs, plasma TV-sets, forged steel items and other high-tech components are to be produced. The location of this Chinese production centre is Koszalin, Poland where the Athletic Group started the production of bicycles last December. In July 2005 the planning foresees in the construction of a new production hall for which about PLN 10 million (€ 2.5 mln) is invested. For the whole of 2005 at least 200,000 bikes are planned to be assembled in the Koszalin factory. At the official opening of the new facility, the Chinese ambassador in Poland, Yuan Gusen stated that the Communist Party and Government in Beijing looks with great interest at what is happening in Koszalin. He also said that expansion of Chinese investments in Europe is unavoidable. “To be really present on the European markets, it is not enough just to flood them with goods. Labour cost in China will increase soon and to avoid the danger of Europe closing it’s borders for Eastern products, the Chinese have to make a leap forward and re-locate production.” With the anti-dumping duties expected to be raised to 48.5% on Chinese bikes and 34.5% on the ones from Vietnam, it is only logical that more production will develop in East Europe. (JO)

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