Boeing’s Battle against Bombardier Escalates; Quebec, British Governments Oppose U.S. Giant

Published By : 28 Sep 2017 | Published By : QYRESEARCH

Boeing recently made headlines with its highly unusual complaint to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce that rival aircraft maker Bombardier was receiving unfair subsidies from the Canadian government that resulted in an uneven playing field. Following the U.S. Commerce Department’s response of handing Bombardier a 220% anti-subsidy duty, the Canadian and Quebec government have been quick to condemn Boeing’s move and ask the authorities to take the sensible stance in what has been an increasingly tense trade environment following Donald Trump’s election. Perhaps surprisingly, Britain has now also joined the fray, with the Theresa May-led Conservative government warning Boeing that this move could result in the aircraft maker losing out on British defense contracts.

Bombardier’s Presence in Quebec, Northern Ireland Creates Concern for Boeing

The major glitch for both the Quebec and British governments is the fact that Bombardier remains a key employer in both regions. The U.S. Commerce Department’s move could result in Bombardier suffering heavy losses in the U.S. market and possibly even being forced to withdraw, leading to the loss of several jobs in both regions. Quebec is important for Justin Trudeau’s Liberal party, who have already admitted winning more seats in Quebec is crucial if the party is to succeed in 2019. Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard described the move as an attack on Canadian jobs, with Trudeau backing him up by suggesting Canada will refuse to buy Boeing F-18 Super Hornet fighter jets, 18 of which are expected to be ordered in the coming years.

In Britain, meanwhile, Theresa May’s unstable minority government relies on a handful of legislators in Northern Ireland, where Bombardier is a major employer. The post-Brexit fiasco has already shaken the Conservative party’s rule in Britain, and losing support from such vital constituencies could turn out to be vital in the long run. 

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