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China’s CRRC Drops Out of Bidding After EU Subsidy Probe

On February 16th, the European Union announced a subsidy investigation against China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation (CRRC). CRRC Qingdao Sifang Locomotive & Rolling Stock Co., Ltd. was suspected of relying on state subsidies to submit a bid with an undue advantage in the tender for electric trains in Bulgaria. The Bulgarian tender was for the purchase of 20 electric trains and maintenance for the next 15 years, with a total value of approximately 610 million euros (660 million US dollars).

On March 26th, the European Commission stated that CRRC withdrew its bid, and that because of the CRRC’s withdrawal, the EU will terminate the investigation.

Thierry Breton, the EU’s Internal Market Commissioner, said “In just a few weeks, our first investigation under the Foreign Subsidy Regulations has already produced results.”

The European Union has recently intensified its scrutiny of Chinese companies that may receive state subsidies to gain bidding advantages. Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, announced an investigation in September of last year into Chinese government subsidies potentially causing “artificially depressed” prices for Chinese electric vehicles hitting the European market.

Source: VOA, March 27, 2024