China Halts Tesla Model 3 Customs Clearance

By Tsvetana Paraskova

Tesla China

China is currently holding around 1,600 Tesla Model 3s at the customs in Shanghai and the customs authority has issued a notice prohibiting the sale of any Model 3 already imported in China because some vehicles have been found to lack proper labeling to make them legal on the Chinese market, financial outlet Caixin reported on Tuesday.

Some of the Model 3s lacked labels in Chinese on their brake fluid tanks, while others had capacities different from the ones stated on the label, Caixin reported, citing China’s General Administration of Customs (GAC).

As a result of the improper labeling, the GAC has issued a notice banning the sale of any Tesla Model 3 in China until further inspections are carried out. New Model 3s entering China will also be thoroughly checked.

According to Caixin, Tesla said that the improper labeling resulted from “incorrect settings on its printers” and “workers’ poor operation.”

The electric vehicle (EV) maker is currently working with the Chinese government to find a solution to the customs clearance procedures and the issues with labeling, Caixin reported.

GAC has also invited third-party institutions to assess possible solutions to the issue, according to the financial publication.

Deliveries of Model 3 outside the United States will be a crucial development for Tesla, whose chief executive Elon Musk has said that he wasn’t worried about Model 3 setbacks because of the drop in the U.S. tax credit, as he expected deliveries to Europe and China to take off.

In its Q4 Update letter, Tesla said that “In January 2019, we started to produce Model 3 vehicles for Europe and China, and the car is now fully certified for sale in these markets. The market opportunity for Model 3 in Europe and China exceeds North America based on the most recent sales of mid-sized premium sedans. Model 3 was designed from the outset for a global market, and shares more than 98% of its parts in common across its regional variants.”

In February, Tesla said it would start selling Model 3 on the Chinese market ahead of schedule. Initially, the Model 3 release was scheduled for March.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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