While Harley-Davidson has not yet announced any definitive plans for selling motorcycles in Vietnam, the company recently expressed satisfaction with a new trade agreement that reduces the Southeast Asian nation's barriers to motorcycle imports and operation.
During the final round of negotiations in the Bilateral WTO Market Access Agreement between the U.S. and Vietnam, officials of the Office of the United States Trade Representative were successful in eliminating or lowering longstanding barriers to Harley-Davidson's market entry in Vietnam.
The agreement in principle lifts an outright ban on large displacement motorcycles, call for the adoption of a basic and transparent motorcycle operators licensing system, relaxes distribution restrictions and reduces tariffs on heavyweight (650cc-plus engine displacement) motorcycles by 60 percent over time.
Harley-Davidson officials say the company has long been interested in expanding its presence in Asia and considers market access of the kind provided by the trade agreement as key to its future expansion into Vietnam.
"Harley-Davidson applauds the agreement that USTR reached with the Government of Vietnam," said Harley-Davidson Vice President of Government Affairs Timothy Hoelter. "The bilateral WTO Accession Agreement opens up important new opportunities for Harley-Davidson in the important Asian region.”
Copyright 2006 Powersports Business