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EU gets green light to impose duties on US imports

On 26 October 2020, the Dispute Settlement Body of the World Trade Organization (WTO) formally authorised the EU to take countermeasures against the United States. The EU can now increase its duties on US exports worth up to $4 billion. The decision follows the WTO panel announcement confirming EU retaliation rights in reaction to illegal subsidies granted to the US aircraft maker, Boeing.

Executive Vice-President of the Economy that Works for People and Commissioner for Trade, Valdis Dombrovskis, said: “Today's formal approval by the Dispute Settlement Body of the WTO confirms the EU's right to impose countermeasures for illegal subsidies to the American aircraft maker, Boeing.

"The European Commission is preparing the countermeasures, in close consultation with our Member States.

"As I have made clear all along, our preferred outcome is a negotiated settlement with the US. To that end, we continue to engage intensively with our American counterparts, and I am in regular contact with US Trade Representative Robert E. Lighthizer.

"In the absence of a negotiated outcome, the EU will be ready to take action in line with the WTO ruling.”

The European Commission is currently finalising the process, involving EU Member States, to be ready to use its retaliation rights in case there is no prospect of finding a mutually beneficial solution to the dispute in the near future.

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