Committee warns Bombardier could face fresh Boeing threat
Call for UK government to carry out possible review of all its Boeing contracts
The Bombardier Aerospace plant in Belfast. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire
Bombardier could face a fresh threat from Boeing if it decides to appeal the decision by a US trade body not to impose high tariffs on sales of Bombardier’s CSeries aircraft or if Boeing raises further complaints, a UK House of Commons committee is warning.
The Northern Ireland Affairs Committee has recommended that unless Boeing confirms it will abide by the International Trade Commission’s (ITC) decision – that imports of Bombardier’s CSeries aircraft do not harm the US domestic market – the UK government should carry out a review of all of the contracts it currently holds with Boeing.
The Northern Ireland Affairs Committee is also advocating that the UK government should adopt an example set by the Canadian government and rule that in future contract negotiations “the past behaviour of companies in relation to economic harm to the UK will be considered”.
In a new report published on Thursday following its inquiry into Bombardier, the committee is also recommending that the UK government should conduct an audit of subsidies that it has given to companies who have significant business in the US market in case this becomes an issue again in the future – Boeing had previously accused Bombardier of benefiting from billions of dollars of government subsidies.
The committee, which is comprised of MPs including four from the North, said it now hoped that the ITC’s decision in Bombardier’s favour would enable the Canadian aerospace group to “expand its operations and thrive”.
It believes the UK government, should in the absence of an Executive, work with local economic agencies to ensure that Bombardier’s new partnership deal with Airbus to build the CSeries aircraft will produce “the best possible outcome for workers in Northern Ireland”.
Meanwhile, at the Singapore Air Show this week Bombardier has said it believes there is a “great opportunity” for the CSeries aircraft in the Asia Pacific market.