These new tariffs tax a large percentage of the parts that Light & Motion uses in their bicycle, diving, and photography lights. What is crushing to their business as a US based manufacturer is the tariffs do not apply to finished goods imported complete from China.
In other words, these tariffs tax US production but give a free pass to the China built competition.
While this result seems counter to the intent of the tariffs, for the last decade US policy has encouraged offshore production and these tariffs continue that trend.
Light & Motion has assembled all of their products in the US for the last 25 years but buys a majority of parts from China (custom parts are supported by $1M in specialty tooling investment and electronics that are designed in the US but produced in China).
Light & Motion is now being taxed on all parts, while competitor products 100% made in China sail into the US market tariff free. These new tariffs send a clear signal that Light & Motion’s Built in America Products are not welcome here. The tariffs direct Light & Motion to move production offshore like its China built competition.
Audie Cornish will explore this perverse result of the tariffs in an interview with Daniel Emerson, CEO of Light & Motion, on NPRs flagship news program All Things Considered.