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  • WTO says US gave illegal aid to Boeing

    The World Trade Organisation has ruled that the American aircraft maker Boeing received illegal subsidies from the US government to develop its 787 plane, EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht said this month.

    [mailchimp_signup][/mailchimp_signup]In a confidential ruling released to both governments, the WTO judges confirmed an earlier finding that the U.S. provided aid to Boeing through federal research grants and state support in developing aircraft including the 787 Dreamliner.
    The ruling, to be made public later this year, means the world’s biggest two aircraft makers, Boeing and Airbus, have both been reprimanded for receiving illegal state aid in the past eight months.

    Airbus said the WTO judges found that Boeing had improperly received at least $5 billion of American taxpayer’s money and that another $2 billion in state and local subsidies yet to be given to the company is also illegal.

    Boeing has previously said that last year’s WTO ruling requires Airbus to “repay or restructure $4 billion in still outstanding illegal launch aid subsidies Airbus received to develop the A380. They must also remedy the adverse effects of the additional $16 billion in other illegal subsidies Airbus received.”.

    Despite the billions of dollars in aid that have gone to both Airbus and Boeing, studies confirm that aircraft manufacturing has made no progress in improving fuel efficiency or reducing emissions over the past decade.

    • Germany’s air ticket tax came into effect on 1 January, putting €8 on flights under 2500km and €45 on flights over 6000km. Austria’s air ticket tax is due to come into effect on 1 April.