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WTO returns to Boeing and Airbus dispute

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by Brian Turner
WTO returns to Boeing and Airbus dispute

The World Trade organization returned to look into the complaints brought by the EU and the US that subsidies paid by the other to the private companies are not allowable under WTO rules.

The EU says that US government subsidies gives Boeing an advantage, while the US claims that subsidies from European governments unfairly aids Airbus.

The WTO investigation is automatic, as it is the second complaint on the matter by both parties. However, a spokesman for the US Trade Representative said from Washington that the US would prefer a negotiated settlement to the dispute, while a EU spokesman said that it remains open to talks toward settlement.

The first complaints came in October of 2004, followed by an agreement to postpone litigation in favor of negotiation.

However, with no settlement forthcoming, both parties returned to the WTO earlier this year to seek a ruling.

A decision from the WTO will not come soon, though, as it is expected to take up to two months to even decide who is to sit on the panel considering the dispute.

A decision is not likely to be reached until the end of next year.

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News posted: July 20, 2005

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