• Robert Tobiassen

NABI Applauds the Senate Finance Committee and USTR

Moving Forward to Suspend, Negotiate, and Settle the Airbus/Boeing Disputes Would be a Productive First Step


For Immediate Release - February 25, 2021


NABI Applauds the Senate Finance Committee and USTR- Nominee Katherine C. Tai on

Confirmation Hearing – Moving Forward to Suspend, Negotiate, and Settle the

Airbus/Boeing Disputes Would be a Productive First Step


NABI applauds the full Membership of the Senate Finance Committee for its bipartisan and

supportive approach in the confirmation hearing for USTR Nominee Katherine C. Tai and

congratulates Ms. Tai for her forthright responses showing her exceptional understanding of the

nuances and challenges of trade for the United States.


Responding to a wide range of questions on a myriad of trade negotiations, disputes, and the

interests of workers, consumers, and businesses, Ms. Tai recognized the need to “prioritize”

reaching an agreement with the European Union to end subsidies and tariffs at the core of the

Airbus dispute. Responding to Senator Cantwell (D-Washington), Ms. Tai said “Between the

U.S. and the EU, I would be very much interested in how to land this plane, excuse the pun.”

Senator Menendez (D-New Jersey) followed up and stressed the harm to U.S. businesses and

importers noting that cheese does not fly as a plane. Responding to his question “Are you

prepared to review the Airbus tariffs to relieve industry,” Ms. Tai said the “U.S. and the EU must

come together to find an answer.” While recognizing tariffs are the way the WTO works, she

underscored the importance of getting the Airbus matter resolved and moving on to WTO

reform.


The theme of rebuilding relationships with traditional trade allies of the United States is a

paramount aim of Ms. Tai. “I will also prioritize rebuilding our international alliances and

partnerships, and re-engaging with international institutions” she pledged in her written opening

statement.


“Ms. Tai’s understanding of, and commitment to, reaching out to our longstanding trade allies,

like the European Union is refreshing and hopeful,” said Robert M. Tobiassen, President of the

National Association of Beverage Importers. “NABI believes a mutual six-month suspension of

the Airbus/Boeing tariffs would reflect a first step in prioritizing the building back better U.S.

trade relations with Europe, perhaps with the EU suspending the doubting in June of its tariffs in

response to the steel and aluminum dispute to level the difference of $7.5 billion in volume of

trade to nearly $4.0 billion by the EU in such a suspension,” he added, “as a first step in

rebuilding relations. USTR and the EU should be able to reach a settlement resolving the limited

context of this large civil aircraft subsidy quickly and then move on to the real question and

solution of state-subsidies facing the U.S. and EU from China’s state-capitalism economy that

can only be negotiated at the WTO by the global trading order.”


For further information, please contact NABI at (202) 393-6224 or

nabipresident@bevimporters.org


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