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Alabama CSeries site still planned despite tariff vote

Bombardier still intends to open a CSeries final assembly site in Mobile, Alabama despite winning a major trade battle with Boeing.

"Yes, we will proceed with the Alabama [final assembly line]. We are full-speed ahead," Bombardier tells FlightGlobal. "We have conducted site visits and planning activities for the Alabama final assembly line, consistent with antitrust laws."

The company confirms its Alabama plans remain unchanged hours after the four commissioners on the US International Trade Commission unanimously ruled that Boeing suffered no harm from Bombardier's CSeries sale to Delta Air Lines in 2016.

Immediately following the ruling Airbus tweeted: "We are happy to see that the ITC concurred with our views. We will carry on full steam with our CSeries project, focusing on addressing the needs of our airline customers and creating more and new, high-skill manufacturing jobs in the US."

The ITC's decision caps an eight-month trade dispute that kicked off when Boeing filed a petition with US authorities in April 2017. The US Department of Commerce already ruled to impose 292% import duties on CSeries, but those duties now disappear because the ITC determined Boeing suffered no harm by Bombardier's sale.

In October 2017, while the trade dispute still simmered, Bombardier and Airbus announced a partnership under which Airbus would acquire majority ownership of CSeries and the companies would open a second CSeries final assembly site in Alabama.

Executives at both airframers said the plan eliminated the threat of import taxes because US-made CSeries would not be subject to the duties.

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