Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Truce on aircraft subsidies fight

The United States and European Union have agreed to suspend their 17-year-long trade dispute over government aircraft subsidies, agreeing to suspend World Trade Organization-authorized tariffs for five years stemming from the Boeing-Airbus dispute. Those tariffs had been temporarily suspended in March. The move eases trade tensions amid a broader effort to improve trans-Atlantic relations and the growing economic competition from China. As part of the deal, the EU and the U.S. agreed to provide research and development funding through an open and transparent process as well as to not give specific support to their own producers that would harm the other side. They will also each release statements spelling out "acceptable support" for aircraft manufacturers. The truce was struck during a summit in Brussels. Since 2004, the U.S. and the EU have accused each other of unfairly subsidizing their aircraft-building giants, America’s Boeing and Europe’s Airbus. Over the past two years, the WTO, which adjudicates such disputes, declared both sides guilty. It allowed the United States to impose up to $7.5 billion in tariffs and the EU up to $4 billion’ worth. (Sources: Multiple, including CNBC, CNN, Wall Street Journal, AP, 06/15/21) Gulf Coast note: Airbus has two aircraft assembly lines in Mobile, Ala., one for the A320 and one for the A220. Additional tariffs were never imposed on aircraft parts sent to Mobile for assembly. Previous related