Brussels suggested the EU and its major overseas partner suspend tariffs imposed on billions of dollars of imports for six months, EU trade chief Valdis Dombrovskis told Germany’s main news platform, Der Spiegel.
The measure would go beyond the latest four-month suspension of import duties that the parties agreed in March.
“We have proposed suspending all mutual tariffs for six months in order to reach a negotiated solution. This would create a necessary breathing space for industries and workers on both sides of the Atlantic,” Dombrovskis said.
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Last month, the two transatlantic partners agreed to suspend mutual tariffs that had covered $7.5 billion of EU imports of American goods and some $4 billion of US products shipped to the bloc. The freeze is set to expire in four months.
The bitter EU-US trade dispute over aerospace subsidies to plane makers Airbus and Boeing dates back to 2004, when Washington challenged European subsidies of Airbus that reportedly had “adverse effects” on the US.
The EU filed a retaliatory complaint against the direct support given to Boeing in the form of regional tax breaks and government grants.
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So far, tit-for-tat duties on various goods have affected nearly $50 billion in mutual trade. The list of EU products on which the US imposed taxes came in at $25 billion, of which $7.5 billion was authorized by the World Trade Organization (WTO). In comparison, the EU’s list totaled a mere $20 billion, of which the WTO approved $3.99 billion.
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