In response to recent action by the European Union in the Large Civil Aircraft (Boeing-Airbus) Dispute in the World Trade Organization (“WTO”), the United States Trade Representative (“USTR”) has announced the inclusion of additional products to the list of EU goods subject to Section 301 tariffs.
Section 301 tariffs will apply to specified additional products of France and Germany, including certain aircraft manufacturing parts, and certain non-sparkling wines, and cognac and other grape brandies. The USTR’s action targets products of France and Germany, as the agency contends these countries have provided the greatest level of WTO-inconsistent large civil aircraft subsidies. In a press release issued late on December 30, 2020, the USTR explained that its decision to expand the pool of EU products currently subject to additional tariffs responds to recent retaliatory action taken by the European Union in November 2020, which imposed additional tariffs on certain large civil aircraft of the United States and other U.S. goods.
Pending confirmation in a forthcoming formal Federal Register Notice, the USTR’s revisions will apply to products entered for consumption, or withdrawn from consumption, on or after 12:01 am (Eastern Standard Time) on January 12, 2021.
The ongoing large civil aircraft spat between the United States and the European Union simmered for more than a decade at the WTO and, in recent years, resulted in a tit-for-tat tariff war between the two trade partners. As importers close the book on 2020, the retaliatory tariffs show no clear signs of slowing. As no exclusion process has yet been implemented by the USTR in connection with this dispute, importers of impacted products should explore options for duty-savings.