Coverage: U.S. threatens more European tariffs over Boeing-Airbus spat
The United States has threatened to add more European products to a list of tariff goods if a WTO case regarding Eu subsidies for Airbus ends favorably for the aircraft maker.
Joshua Zumbrun had the news for MarketWatch:
The U.S. widened its threat to impose tariffs against the European Union, pending the outcome of a World Trade Organization case over the EU’s subsidies of the airplane manufacturer Airbus SE.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said Monday that as part of a long-running dispute over aircraft subsidies it would consider tariffs on an additional 89 items with an annual trade value of $4 billion, including cheese, pasta and Scottish and Irish whiskies as well as chemicals and metals. The U.S. in April began the process of imposing tariffs against the EU pending the resolution of a WTO case that found the aircraft manufacturer has received unfair governmental support. The European Union has proposed tariffs against the U.S. over a companion case regarding U.S. subsidies of Boeing Co.
Andrea Shalal reported for Reuters:
The United States and the EU have threatened to impose billions of dollars of tit-for-tat tariffs on planes, tractors and food in a nearly 15-year dispute at the World Trade Organization over aircraft subsidies given to U.S. planemaker Boeing Co (BA.N) and its European rival, Airbus SE (AIR.PA).
Senior officials from Boeing and a U.S. aerospace trade group urged the U.S. government last month to narrowly tailor any tariffs imposed on the EU over illegal aircraft subsidies to avoid harming American manufacturers.
No comment was immediately available from Boeing or Airbus.
The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States criticized the Trump administration’s latest tariff threats and warned they would jeopardize U.S. jobs and hurt consumers.
“We strongly oppose the inclusion of distilled products in the proposed retaliation list,” said spokeswoman Lisa Hawkins.
Bloomberg’s Sarah McGregor and Jenny Leonard wrote:
The EU has a similar case pending against Boeing and has readied retaliatory tariffs of its own. Though the dispute predates President Donald Trump’s efforts to rewrite America’s big trading relationships, the timing of the latest punitive measures will add to already strained ties between Washington and Brussels.
The airplane subsidy spat and the tariffs both sides are threatening contrast with the Trump administration’s other high-profile trade moves because they’re playing out under WTO rules rather than by unilateral White House authority. Under Trump, the U.S. has called for sweeping changes at the Geneva-based WTO and is currently blocking nominees to its appeals panel — a move that may paralyze the institution’s dispute-settling capacity by year end.
The USTR estimates the EU subsidies to Airbus cause approximately $11 billion in economic harm to the U.S. annually. The World Trade Organization has found the EU subsidies violate international trade rules and it’s expected to decide this summer on the amount of countermeasures the U.S. can impose.