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July 12, 2018

SPENGLER: Germany lines up with China in trade war.

Houston, we’ve got a problem. Forget about Harley-Davidson. Some of the world’s most powerful industrial firms have just given China a gigantic vote of confidence.

BMW will expand its joint venture with Brilliance Auto to produce 519,000 vehicles a year. It also set up a joint venture with produce an electric version of the Mini together with Great Wall Auto. And it agreed to buy $4.7 billion worth of batteries from Chinese producer CATL, which just announced a new plant in southern Germany. Volkswagen earlier this year announced that it would invest $18 billion in China by 2022 and construct six plants to build electric vehicles. Oh, and BMW will move some of its SUV production out of its South Carolina plant in response to auto tariffs.

Daimler will start to test self-driving cars in Beijing. China’s new cities are designed to accommodate self-driving cars, unlike older American cities. Chemical giant BASF will spend $10 billion on a second giant facility in China. And Siemens will develop gas turbines together with China’s State Power Investment Co.

None of this is good news for the United States.

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