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US plans tariffs on EU

The US is preparing a list of European Union products on which it intends to impose retaliatory tariffs in response to the European subsidies given to Airbus. The preliminary list includes certain new aircraft and aircraft parts, seafood, yogurt, butter, cheese, citrus fruits, virgin olive oil, wine, printed books, threads, carpets and other textiles, men’s and women’s apparel, iron and steel articles, such as nails, and parts and accessories of bicycles.

This new round of planned tariffs stems from a World Trade Organization ruling last May, which found that Boeing rival Airbus had received illegal funding for several of its aircraft models. In the dispute, which began in 2004, the United States argued that the EU gave Airbus billions of dollars of launch aid that resulted in an unfair advantage for Airbus. Specifically, the United States asserted that the aid allowed Airbus to gain market share in Europe, Australia, China, South Korea, and elsewhere. In response, the European Union announced that it was also readying a list of tariffs to counter US subsidies to Boeing.

The proposed imposition of new tariffs comes amid tense trade relations between the United States and the EU. Continued threats from the United States to impose auto tariffs, along with the corresponding threats from the EU in retaliation, are further exacerbating the situation.