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Take hard line against Boeing in Bombardier spat, Quebec premier urges feds

Take hard line against Boeing in Bombardier spat, Quebec premier urges feds

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Prime Minister Theresa May, who has previously been reluctant to criticise Trump's administration, said on Wednesday she is "bitterly disappointed" by the news.

The ruling stems from claims by rival USA firm Boeing that Bombardier received unfair state subsidies from the United Kingdom and Canada - allowing it to sell airliners at below cost prices in the US.

Complaints by Boeing that the new Bombardier C-Series jets were being dumped in the US at cut prices have led the US Department for Commerce to place punitive tariffs on any imports from the latter.

This sentiment was echoed in London, where the government's business department said it was "only the first step in the process".

"The Government will continue to work with the company to protect vital jobs for Northern Ireland", a tweet on the prime minister's official account said.

"There is a specific niche for that airline and I don't think that either Airbus or Boeing are competing seriously with that airplane", he said.

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"This is not the behaviour we expect of Boeing and could indeed jeopardise our future relationship with Boeing", Sir Michael said on a visit to Belfast.

Now, the ruling - which is set for a final determination on December 12 - could further strain relations between Ottawa and Washington, already at a low point after US President Donald Trump pushed for a redraft of the North Atlantic Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Canada and Mexico. "We will continue to work closely with the Canadian government to encourage all parties to reach a credible resolution as quickly as possible".

He said the British government is committed to protecting jobs.

Noel Gibson, who has worked at the Bombardier factory in East Belfast for 27 years, fears for the future of jobs.

Couillard disagreed, saying the US$1 billion invested by the province in the CSeries program was not a subsidy and that no other investment in Bombardier was now planned.

Fallon said Boeing was a "major defence partner", and stood to "gain a lot of British defence spending".

Boeing claimed each jet cost $33m (£25m) to produce but that Bombardier had sold them for $20m (£15m) each in a display of "price dumping".

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US secretary of commerce Wilbur Ross said on Wednesday: "The US values its relationships with Canada, but even our closest allies must play by the rules".

Bombardier said in a statement that the ruling against it was "divorced from the reality about the financing of multibillion dollar aircraft programmes".

GMB national officer, Ross Murdoch described the decision as a "hammer blow to Belfast" and accused Ms May of being "asleep at the wheel when she could and should have been fighting to protect these workers".

Bombardier - which bought Short Brothers in 1989 - is one of Northern Ireland's largest employers.

"This is just a preliminary decision, so this will be a risk overhang on the program for some time", said Chris Higgins, an analyst at Morningstar.

"This is questioning the way that the Canadian government and the United Kingdom government have chosen to fund and develop their aerospace and innovations sectors".

The Montreal-based manufacturer said Boeing was "seeking to use a skewed process to stifle competition and prevent US airlines and their passengers from benefiting from the CSeries".

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