U.S. hits Bombardier with another round of duties

Oct 08, 2017, 00:44
U.S. hits Bombardier with another round of duties

Last week, the US Department of Commerce said C-Series jets should be subject to 219pc import duty, due to subsidies its manufacturer Bombardier gets from Canada and the UK.

Echoing remarks from its statement last week, Delta noted the decision was preliminary and said it was confident regulators "will conclude that no US manufacturer is at risk" from Bombardier's plane.

The U.S. Department of Commerce on Friday imposed more duties on the delivery of Bombardier's C Series jetliner in a dispute between the Canadian company and Boeing.

Bombardier pointed out that the CSeries 100- to 150-seat airline carrier, still to be manufactured to fill the Delta order, will be built with half of the parts coming from USA suppliers.

The Commerce Department said it based its preliminary ruling partly because Bombardier had failed to provide information requested by the department.

The second round of import duties marks the latest blow for Bombardier, which received financial support from Quebec and Canada after its biggest jet came in two years late and about $2 billion over budget.

The subsidy row arose after Northern Ireland's powersharing administration and the UK Government pledged to invest nearly £135 million (€150 million) in the establishment of the C-Series manufacturing site in Belfast.

USA trade officials on Friday ruled that Bombardier Inc. unfairly discounted sales of a new jetliner, setting up a battle as to whether Boeing Co. suffered any harm from competing with its Canadian rival.

"The US is committed to free, fair and reciprocal trade with Canada, but this is not our idea of a properly functioning trading relationship", Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Friday.

Bombardier can appeal the decision to a USA court or to a dispute-resolution panel created under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

Earlier this week, the International Trade Commission bolstered that policy by finding US washing machine makers have been harmed by rising imports from South Korea.

Canada has threatened to cancel its planned purchase of 18 Super Hornets from Boeing, while the British government fears job losses at Bombardier's plant in Northern Ireland. That argument was augmented by the Canadian government.

If the preliminary determination stands, the U.S. International Trade Commission will proceed with its countervailing investigation against Bombardier and release its decision in February.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and May are appealing directly to U.S. President Donald Trump.

The C-Series operation's immediate future was thought to have been secured after Bombardier signed a $5.6bn deal in 2016 to provide the aircraft.

The programme also received a billion U.S. dollars from the Canadian provincial government in Quebec in 2015 when its fortunes appeared to be ailing.

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