Moog Warns Trump Tariff Threat On US Synthesizer Manufacturing

Moog Music Inc tells us the upcoming 25% tariff on Chinese components will result in a very real threat on US synthesizer manufacturing and jobs. Here's what you can do about it.  

Moog Music Inc have come out against the recently announced 25% tariffs on Chinese electrical circuit boards and components by US President Trump.

All components used by US companies will be 25% more expensive than for those companies who don't reside in the US, which will dramatically increase the cost of building a synthesizer, and as well as putting companies like Moog at a competitive disadvantage, could threaten jobs amongst US synth makers. It could, indeed, force small and large US-based synth manufacturers to relocate abroad, or have all manufacturing completed directly in China.

Imagine a world without new Moog synths (or re-issued ones)?

Imagine a world without new Moog synths (or re-issued ones)?

The 25% US import tax on Chinese components is due to take effect on July 6, 2018, and will not affect a completed synthesizer made in China (like the Behringer Neutron or Model D).

Here's what Moog say in an open letter and call for support via their website:

Dear Moog Family,

We need your help.A U.S. tariff (import tax) on Chinese circuit boards and associated components is expected to take effect on July 6, 2018.

These tariffs will immediately and drastically increase the cost of building our instruments, and have the very real potential of forcing us to lay off workers and could (in a worst case scenario) require us to move some, if not all, of our manufacturing overseas.

There is one thing all of us can do together to try and stop this: Write to our elected officials. 

You can view the full letter here.

The Moog Music Inc. family need your support.

The Moog Music Inc. family need your support.

Aproximately 50% of all components used in building a synthesizer by Moog are from China. It doesn't take a math expert to see that if these new tarrifs go through it'll be impossible for companies like Moog to compete on a level playing field with synth manufacturers based in Europe, or directly in China. It certainly threatens Moog Music Inc and other companies' employees in the short term, and the viability of manufacturing synths in the United States in the long term.

Moog Mother 32s 

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It's pretty clear that Trump and his team, none of whom are economists, as far as I know, do not think through the consequences of their rash trade policy. His actions seem to be simplistic, knee-jerk decisions designed to appeal to his base in the short term. Considering how many of his own business ventures he drove into bankruptcy, this is hardly surprising. Things will only get worse before they get better because Trump will NEVER admit he has made a mistake. Moog is just one of many American companies that are, or will be, feeling the negative effects of Trump's ego driven policies!! Sorry to get political here but this is a political article. :-)
Too bad, guess Moog will have to deal with it. There will be far more jobs created by forcing, if need be by more taxes, companies to keep manufacturing in the US. China can’t keep stealing US intellectual property by requiring US companies to partner with Chinese investors and these tarriffs are a good step forward in pressuring them to change these practices. IMO, these tarriffs don’t go far enough. If the price of Moog synths has to go up, then so be it. The sector is doing well anyway. Computer and electronics manufacturing showed the fourth largest increase in jobs of all sectors in 2017. And Moog could always apply for a waiver if there are no competing American manufacturers.
What a terrible POV. I don’t claim to be an expert on the topic, however if I was going to invest a large sum of my money I would want to know how the technology works. Also, if a company from a foreign country wants to sell a tech to people I would want to know exactly how it works as well. Those company’s selling to the chinese market have a choice, and they choose to give the chinese the info on tech in order to make more money.

"The thing is that the foreign companies that give up their technology usually do so at least somewhat of their own volition," "Yes, maybe they need to do so to get into China, but they also have the choice not to go into China, right?"- Dan Harris, a Seattle-based attorney who advises international companies on doing business in China.

"Intellectual property (IP) theft is yesterday's issue," wrote Lewis of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
Basically, the parts need to be manufactured in the US and be of higher quality. I've sent back a brand new mother 32 and it costed me an extra $40 to ship it back to Moog. If anything, Moog is a small portion of the pie here. There are far more benefits from this and we can't base our economy of a profiteering synthesizer company. I own two mother 32's and a REV-2. I've had problems with all products. Could it be because they are chinese parts within? Quality, not quantity.
Moog already has a competitive advantage over other brands. The retail price for their gear is much more than any comparable brand. And PCBs? You don’t have to get them made in China. Many other countries have PCB fabbing.Or you know, get a loan and build a small scale pcb factory.

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