US companies are blacklisting Canada's aerospace industry because of Ottawa's failure to back the Iraq war, the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada (AIAC) is warning. "Some of our members have been notified that contracts will be cancelled or delayed," says AIAC president Peter Smith.

Smith says at least 12 members, which he will not name because of the impact on their share prices, have told him they have lost business from US customers. About C$17 billion ($11.5 billion) of Canada's C$22 billion aerospace sales last year came from the USA.

Bombardier's chief executive Paul Tellier says he is "deeply concerned about the deterioration of US-Canadian relations". The company is vying with Embraer for a regional jet order from US Airways. General Dynamics Canada says the way Canada's reputation is being negatively portrayed in the US media is worrying. "The industry's concern is somewhat justified," says president John Watts. Derek Burney, president and chief executive of CAE, says he would have preferred Canada to be among "the coalition of the willing" with the USA, UK and Australia. "We quietly accept US security without being prepared to pay much of a price ourselves," he says.

Smith says US citizens have contacted AIAC members to say they are appealing to members of Congress to boycott Canadian goods and services.

In a letter to prime minister Jean Chrétien, Smith says Canada's failure "to provide even a modicum of moral support to our closest ally… and the unprofessional and inflammatory anti-American rhetoric uttered publicly by members of your government have caused significant damage to relations".

Source: Flight International