posted on Jun, 1 2005 @ 02:04 AM
The United States and the European Union have both filed lawsuits with the World Trade Organization over alleged anticompetitive subsidies offered to
Boeing and Airbus by the respective governments. The various tax breaks and launch aid packages offered to both companies have long been a sticking
point but until now have been handled through bilateral negotiations. It could take several years before the WTO finally settles the dispute.
May 31 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. and European Union filed lawsuits against one another at the World Trade Organization over aid to planemakers Airbus
SAS and Boeing Co., setting the stage for the biggest clash in the WTO's 10-year history.
The EU said it will ask the WTO to outlaw U.S. aid to Boeing after the Bush administration revived its case against no-risk European government loans
to Airbus. Boeing lost its lead as the world's top seller of commercial jets to Airbus two years ago.
Boeing, which EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson said was ``instrumental'' in pressuring the U.S. to lodge the complaint, is attacking Airbus ``not
because it fears subsidies, but because it fears competition,'' he told a Brussels news conference today. ``I can assure you Europe's interests will
be fully defended.''
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I've always thought that the launch aid provided to Airbus was unfair, but it's also true that Boeing receives some aid from the U.S. government.
Perhaps with this suit, the issue will finally be settled.
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