Meaningful transatlantic relationship EU’s top priority: EU’s new trade chief

According to a report from the Financial Times, the EU’s new trade chief has told the United States to remove the imposition of tariffs on more than $7 billion EU products or face additional duties on exports to Europe, in an effort to bring about a settlement in the Airbus SE and Boeing Co dispute.

Mending transatlantic relationship is EU’s top priority, and the U.S. should withdraw tariffs it imposed on Airbus as a confidence building measure, said the EU’s new trade chief Valdis Dombrovskis.

“Of course, if the US is not withdrawing their tariffs we have no choice but to then introduce our tariffs,” said Dombrovskis.

In October 2019, the United States was awarded the right to impose tariffs on $7.5 billion of annual EU imports in its case against Airbus by the World Trade Organization (WTO). Washington then had imposed 25% duties on products ranging from single-malt whisky to olives and cheese and 10% tariffs on most European-made Airbus jets.

The WTO has also cleared the EU to impose tariffs on U.S. products worth $4 billion to retaliate against subsidies for American planemaker Boeing, said sources with the award expected to be published within weeks.

Refusing to speculate on the impact of Joe Biden winning the presidency, Dombrovskis said, a protectionist approach was something that came with the Trump administration.

“But in any case we will be engaging . . . and trying to bring the US administration back within the framework of multilateralism,” said Dombrovskis.

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