EU formally requests countermeasures in WTO spat

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European Union regulators have formally requested the application of countermeasures against the USA as part of the transatlantic dispute over subsidies to large civil aircraft programmes.

The request to the World Trade Organisation's dispute-settlement committee, filed on 27 September, follows an assessment that the USA "had not lived up to its obgligation" to remove subsidies to Boeing, says the European Commission.

It states that the countermeasures requested amount to some $12 billion annually, based on estimates of the damages caused by "unfair and biased competition" in the aircraft sector arising from US industry.

Boeing stated on 23 September that the Office of the US Trade Representative had taken actions to address "relatively small" amounts of subsidy identified by the WTO, and that the USA "has now complied" with the WTO ruling.