New tariffs on EU imports into USA amid trading spat

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Miguel Medina, AFP file picture | cheese is one of the EU goods targeted by the tariffs

The United States on Monday proposed $4 billion in tariffs on a range of European Union products – including cheese and Scotch and Irish whiskey – over subsidies for commercial aircraft.  The list also includes sausages, hams, pasta, and olives.

“Today, the Office of the US Trade Representative is issuing for public comment a supplemental list of products that could potentially be subject to additional duties,” it said in a statement.

The potential tariffs are due to “EU subsidies on large civil aircraft,” the statement said.

“This supplemental list adds 89 tariff subheadings with an approximate trade value of $4 billion to the initial list published on April 12, which included tariff subheadings with an approximate trade value of $21 billion,” it added.

For more than 14 years, Washington and Brussels have accused each other of unfairly subsidising aviation giants Boeing and Airbus, respectively, in a tit-for-tat dispute that long predates US President Donald Trump’s time in office.

The Boeing-Airbus spat is the longest and most complicated dispute dealt with by the World Trade Organisation, which aims to create a level playing field in global trade.

Trump has made taking aim at what he views as unfair trade practices that disadvantage the US a key goal of his presidency, and tariffs are his favoured tool for doing so.

The latest chapter in the US-EU trade spat comes amid a trade war between Washington and Beijing that has seen the two sides impose tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars in two-way trade.

Source: France 24 (AFP)