America’s Boeing and Europe’s Airbus are each claiming victory in a long-running tit-for-tat row over subsidies. Airbus says a World Trade Organisation report agrees that Boeing should lose more than 15 billion euros-worth of US government payments.
“My position has always been that the United States administration and European Commission should engage in negotiations about this and I think that the outcome of the panel report makes it clear that the only way out of this dispute is by finding a negotiated settlement,” said EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht.
The report won’t be released until next May. But Boeing says it undermines Airbus’s accusations, by identifying less than four billion euros-worth of subsidies, far less than the 18 billion claimed by the Europeans. It’s the biggest bilateral trade dispute ever to come before the WTO, which condemned Airbus itself in June for receiving illegal subsidies.