Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Rivian Electric Vehicle FTZ Application Draws Oppostion from Multiple U.S. Industries

Rivian Automotive, LLC (Rivian) submitted a notification of proposed production activity to the FTZ Board for its facilities in Normal, Illinois (see 86 FR 7249). The facility will be used for the production of electric passenger and delivery vehicles, as well as vehicle components, subassemblies, chargers and charging stations. Production under FTZ procedures could exempt Rivian from customs duty payments on the foreign-status materials/components used in export production. On its domestic sales, for the foreign-status materials/components below, Rivian would be able to choose the lower duty rates during customs entry procedures that apply to the finished articles, rather than the higher rates applicable to certain foreign inputs (i.e., there is a "duty inversion").

The request indicates that carrying/storage cases of man-made fibers, seat belt webbing, and camping tents for pick-up truck beds will be admitted to the zone in privileged foreign (PF) status (19 CFR 146.41) thereby precluding inverted tariff benefits on such items. This is in line with nearly two decades experience of most foreign textile components being excluded, either in the application, or, in the final Board order.

HOWEVER, the request includes many articles, such as rubber profiles, steel springs, and other such article which, while not textiles themselves, may have a textile covering or coating, such as flock.

Comments in opposition were filed by:

A determination by the FTZ Board is expected by early May.

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