Senate Votes to Roll Back Auto Industry Lending Guidance from Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

On April 18, the Senate narrowly passed a resolution to roll back certain guidance issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in 2013 pertaining to auto lending.  As previously written about on a Foley & Lardner LLP blog, the CFPB issued the specific guidance through a bulletin regarding compliance with fair lending requirements for auto lenders involved in indirect lending.

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China to Relax Joint Venture Requirements for Manufacturing

vehicle manufacturing

On Tuesday, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced a planned rollback of the manufacturing foreign ownership limits first set forth in the 1990s, which require that manufacturing operations in China be at least 50% Chinese owned.  Specifically, China will begin by eliminating this ownership requirement for electric vehicle production and gradually roll back the requirements for all other automobiles as well as airplane manufacturing and shipbuilding until all limits are lifted in 2022.  This move, coupled with China’s aggressive 10% electric vehicle mandate starting in 2019, emphasizes the concerted efforts being taken by the Chinese government to dominate the future global electric vehicle manufacturing industry.

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Fueled by Auto Industry Support, Bike Sharing Systems are Taking Over Cities

bike sharing

Back in November 2017 we discussed the “last mile” issue facing cities and urban planners around the globe. At that time we noted that “… transit options often fail at providing a solution of getting people to their final destination with relative ease.” We noted the benefit of Vehicle-to-Vehicle and Vehicle-to-Infrastructure communication systems as a way to better coordinate transit infrastructure systems. But, even those options won’t solve all the ailments of urban transportation. Realizing this, many transit authorities and mobility companies are looking towards bike sharing as a new tool in the fight against urban congestion.

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Autonomous Vehicles and Ride Sharing are Reshaping Cities Now

autonomous vehicles

Just two months ago, we wrote about how Autonomous Vehicles and Ride Sharing Will Reshape Our Buildings, Our Cities, and Our Lives. We explained that “[w]hile current developments require parking space to accommodate commuters, the future might make these spaces obsolete.” Chicago is experiencing that on a grand scale with the loss of surface parking lots, a staple of the city, especially in the business center, the Loop, and the areas into which that business center has expanded, River North, River West, West Loop, South Loop, Gold Coast, etc. (Chicago loves to carve as many marketable neighborhood names as possible into a small area).

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EPA Rolls Back Greenhouse Gas Emission Standards for Auto Industry

fuel economy

The Trump Administration has taken steps to roll back Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions standards applicable to most automobiles in the United States.  On April 2nd Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt announced plans to roll back an Obama Administration determination that left the Midterm Evaluation standards in place for the 2022-2025 GHG emission limits for light-duty vehicles. The Midterm Evaluation standards, finalized in 2012, had imposed heightened requirements for fuel efficiency in automobiles.

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