The SPD wants to stem the flood of imports of cheap items from China by expanding tariffs.

Alexander Bartz, trade expert for the SPD parliamentary group, warns in the “Bild am Sonntag”: “Chinese low-cost suppliers like Temu and Shein are flooding the German market alone with 400,000 environmentally harmful and sometimes health-endangering products every day.” Consumers should be better protected from “toxic children’s toys and clothing.” “Burning batteries in electronic items” must be protected.

In order to curb the glut of parcels from China, Bartz wants to apply the special rule, according to which no customs duty is charged on imports of goods worth less than 150 euros. This exception should apply until 2028. Things have to go faster for the SPD politician. He calls on “the EU Commission to bring forward the introduction of tariffs on goods under 150 euros to 2025”. 

According to Bartz, expanding tariffs would also prevent tax fraud. The low-cost suppliers often shipped their products individually in order to avoid export duties. “This suspected tax fraud is causing billions of dollars in damages in Europe,” said Bartz. 

Bartz believes that not only consumers need to be protected from toxic and dangerous Chinese products, but also German businesses from Chinese practices. The Chinese government is solely focused on flooding markets with inferior products. The SPD politician: “This must be stopped in order to protect our domestic trading companies from dishonest trading practices.”