The United States and European Union have agreed to a five-year truce on their long-running dispute over subsidies to aircraft manufacturers.
The announcement Tuesday came as U.S. President Joe Biden was in Brussels for a summit with EU leaders.
U.S.-based Boeing and EU-based Airbus are at the center of allegations that subsidies helping one of the plane-makers hurt the other in the global market. The dispute led to a series of tit-for-tat tariffs during the previous U.S. administration of President Donald Trump. Those tariffs were suspended in March.
“This deal will ensure that our workers and companies in this key sector can compete on a level playing field,” U.S. Trade Representative Ambassador Katherine Tai told reporters Tuesday. “And this deal allows us to start turning the page on this longstanding dispute, to work together to address our shared concerns with unfair and coercive economic practices, and to ensure standards for fair competition.”
COVID-19, climate change
Also in focus during Tuesday’s talks are efforts to battle the coronavirus pandemic and climate change, as well as working together on trade and foreign affairs.
A senior Biden administration official speaking to reporters Monday highlighted the creation of a council on trade and technology as a major initiative to come out of Tuesday’s meetings.
“The Trade and Technology Council will cover a number of significant areas of priority for both the United States and the European Union, from coordinating on standards for new technologies like artificial intelligence, quantum computing, biotechnology; to coordinating on supply chain resilience; to coordinating on import -- or investment screening and export controls; to coordinating on how best to reform the WTO,” the official said.
In statements issued ahead of the talks, the two sides also said they would reiterate support for the COVAX facility for ensuring equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines, and to work together on ways to promote a global recovery from the economic impacts of the pandemic. They also planned to discuss efforts to reform the World Health Organization.
Russia & China
After both were a major topic at G-7 and NATO meetings this week, Russia and China will again be on the agenda Tuesday.
Both the White House and European Union said the leaders would also express a commitment to supporting democracy and combatting corruption, and to upholding human rights around the world. They are also pledging to cooperate on issues involving cybersecurity and migration.
The EU side is being represented in the summit by European Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
On climate change, the United States and the EU said they would reaffirm commitments to upholding the 2015 Paris climate agreement and to become climate neutral economies by 2050. They also said they plan to urge other “major players” to take ambitious climate action. Adopted by nearly 200 nations when it was initially signed, the Paris climate agreement’s goal is to slow down global warming.