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With US President Joe Biden set to meet the presidents of the European Council and Commission, Charles Michel and Ursula von der Leyen, at around the top of the hour for a US-EU summit (livestream here), there is widespread expectation that they will announce a deal on the long-running Airbus-Boeing trade spat that has seen billions of dollars worth of tariffs applied on both sides over a 17-year period.

  • The spat is the longest running trade dispute at the WTO, and has hindered progression on EU-US economic relations for years as both sides have sought to protect their high-tech airline sectors that are major employers in several states in the US and in the powerful member states of Germany, France, and Spain in the EU.
  • Earlier today, VdL stated that, "I am very positive that we will find an agreement on the Airbus-Boeing issue today, in our conversation with our American friends...I am very positive and convinced that we will deliver together today."
  • The US and EU still have other areas of economic disagreement, with Trump-era tariffs on steel and aluminium in place, while there is still no clarity on EU digital taxes on US tech giants (although the Biden admin has sounded much more willing to countenance taxes in this area than the previous White House).
  • Both US and EU seem keen to bury the hatchet on trade issues, with an eye on proving a united front against China in the global economic sphere.