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Piaggio shares drop amid fears Trump could slap tariffs on Vespas

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Piaggio shares drop amid fears Trump could slap tariffs on Vespas
Photo: Craig Barritt/AFP
12:49 CEST+02:00
Shares in Piaggio fell four percent on the Milan stock exchange on Thursday following a report that US President Donald Trump is mulling 100 percent import duties on the company's classic Vespa scooters and other European products.

The move by Trump is in response to protests by US beef exporters, who have lamented that the EU market has not been sufficiently opened up to them under a 2009 trade agreement, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

Another Italian brand on the hit-list is San Pellegrino mineral water, which was bought by Nestlé in 1997, while France's Roquefort cheese might also affected by the tariff, the newspaper said.

Between 15-20,000 Vespa scooters are produced for the American market each year from a factory in Pontedera, a town in the province of Pisa.

“If this rumour is true, it will be a disaster for Pontedera,” Graziano Barsotti, a representative of the Uilm union within Piaggio was quoted by the Huffington Post Italia as saying.

“A significant reduction in the American market would have serious repercussions on staff levels.”   

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