US Suspends Tariffs On Whiskey, Other UK Products In Airbus-Boeing Dispute

US Suspends Tariffs On Whiskey, Other UK Products In Airbus-Boeing Dispute

The Biden administration has issued a four-month suspension on tariffs for UK products involved in a longstanding dispute over illegal aid provided to Airbus and Boeing.

The suspension will allow the US and the UK to “focus on negotiating a balanced settlement to the disputes,” according to the UK government in a Thursday statement. It will eliminate a 25% tariff on products such as Scotch whiskey, clotted cream and biscuits, according to Bloomberg.

Whisky expert Charles MacLean inspects a bottle of Macallan Valerio Adami 60-year-old 1926. PA Images/Getty Images

Removing tariffs on U.K-U.S. commerce has been a priority for Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government as they seek a broader trade deal with President Joe Biden’s administration. Britain unilaterally dropped tariffs on some U.S. products indefinitely in January in a bid to reduce trade tensions. The former Trump administration did not reciprocate the U.K.’s concession. -Bloomberg

According to the UK, the move is a “bold, joint step” towards resolving one of the longest running disputes at the World Trade Organization (WTO), and that the two countries should focus on “addressing the challenges posed by new entrants to the civil aviation market from non-market economies, such as China”

The 17-year-long dispute involves the US and four European countries which manufacture Airbus aircraft and its components; Germany, France, Spain and the UK. The temporary rollback of tariffs could help resolve part of the WTO dispute, which has levied tariffs on nearly $12 billion worth of transatlantic trade, according to the report.

In November, the EU announced tariffs targeting $4 billion worth of Boeing planes and U.S. products including spirits, nuts and tractors as part of a tit-for-tat escalation against the U.S. For its part, the U.S. imposed levies on $7.5 billion of EU products starting in 2019. -Bloomberg

The European Commission had originally asked the US for a six-month suspension on tariffs while negotiating a settlement, however former US trade rep. Robert Lighthizer refused to do so, and instead further hiked tariffs against EU goods during his final days in office.

It is unclear if the Biden administration will also suspend tariffs on EU goods targeted by the Trump administration which were also linked to the dispute.

Tyler Durden
Thu, 03/04/2021 – 07:42

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