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US and EU will work together to confront China in aerospace industry, trade official says

US and EU will work together to confront China in aerospace industry, trade official says

Washington plans to work with the European Union to address China’s non-market practices in the aerospace industry, US Trade Representative Katherine Tai said on Wednesday.

Washington’s top commerce official also promoted trilateral cooperation with the EU and Japan as the best way to build economic ties with “democratic values”, and dodged a question of whether president Joe Biden‘s administration plans to negotiate access to a Pacific Rim trading bloc from which his predecessor Donald Trump withdrew.

An agreement last year between the US and the EU on subsidies to Boeing and Airbus has given them a basis for addressing the “harmful” practices Beijing is using to compete in the global commercial aircraft market, Tai said in a virtual discussion organized by the Dublin-based Institute for International and European Affairs.

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“In resolving this disagreement, the United States and the European Union can now turn our attention to tackling harmful no-market practices in the sector, from countries like China that are disrupting the aerospace market and creating a truly uneven playing field for the rest of the world,” Tai said.

The Chinese government often demands that foreign companies set up joint ventures with domestic companies, which regularly leads to complaints from Western companies that this leads to theft of intellectual property.

The practice has been quoted as a major factor hindering China’s development of a fully domestically developed commercial aircraft model that can compete with those of Boeing and Airbus. Despite the caution, the state-owned Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (Comac) is expected to enter the slim body market with its C919 jet this year.

Ending tariffs on industrial metal trade between the US and the EU and reaching agreements with a number of European countries – including France and Italy – to abolish taxes on digital services have given impetus to strengthening of a transatlantic alliance, Tai said.

She added that plans for a second meeting of the United States-European Union Trade and Technology Council (TTC) this year, after being inaugural meeting in September, the ties would strengthen further.

“The Biden Harris administration will use the TTC … to advance our shared democratic values ​​and protect basic labor and workers’ rights,” she said. “We have also renewed our trilateral partnership with the EU and Japan to address the global challenges posed by non-market policies and practices.”

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When asked whether Washington would seek access to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), Tai said only that the Biden administration was trying to build a broader “Indo-Pacific economic framework.”

“The partnerships and bridges we are trying to build…respond to the needs that all of our economic policymakers are currently facing to ensure that our trade engagement is focused on and supportive of sustainability, resilience, inclusiveness and also competitiveness,” she said. said.

Trade leaders in the US, Europe and Japan said in November they had agreed to renew their trilateral partnership advocated by the Trump administration to address the global challenges posed by “third party non-market policies and practices.” countries”, a clear reference to China.

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