BMW flexible to Trump's tax plans and Brexit challenges: CEO

We need free markets, waiting to see on Brexit: BMW CEO

German carmaker BMW is ready to "wait and see" before taking action over either a potential U.S. border tax or a "Hard Brexit," chief executive Harald Krueger told CNBC on Monday.

"We have a big footprint in the United States, we are the biggest net exporter from the United States, it is worth $10 billion a year, so I think that is what BMW in the Unites States is all about," Krueger told CNBC at the Geneva Motor Show.

When asked whether BMW would be prepared to move its planned car plant from Mexico to the U.S. in the event of a tariff being introduced by the new administration, Krueger told CNBC, "We are flexible."

'Wait and see'

U.S. President Donald Trump had warned BMW shortly before his inauguration in January that the automaker's plans to build a new plant in Mexico in 2019 would face a border tax of 35 percent if it attempted to export to the U.S.

"There is no decision so far (regarding a border adjustment tax) so we need to wait and see what the future will bring," he added.

Trump has frequently spoken about lowering tax rates for U.S. businesses. While, Republicans in the House of Representatives have proposed a reduction in domestic statutory corporate tax rates which could result in the introduction of the so-called border adjustment tax (BAT). An official plan has not yet been confirmed.

Earlier on Monday, General Motors' chief executive told CNBC that the sale of its European Opel business had not been prompted by tax policies proposed by U.S. Republicans.

BMW 'definitely' needs free markets

German newspaper Handelsblatt reported at the end of February that BMW were considering moving operations at it Oxford plant in the U.K. to Germany amid fears over Brexit.

Any such decision by the German carmaker would deal a major blow to the U.K. as Prime Minister Theresa May inches closer to beginning formal exit talks with the European Union. May had set a self-imposed deadline of April and appears to be on track to begin Brexit negotiations with the bloc in a matter of weeks.

"It is too early to really calculate and to understand what will happen in detail but I mean as BMW group I would like to have access to free markets... I like foreign trade and I definitely need free markets and international trade," Krueger said.