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7/3/17

WTO upholds ruling against Washington’s tax reduction for Boeing - by Dominic Gates

The World Trade Organization (WTO) on Friday ruled that the U.S. has suitably addressed all but one piece of the European Union’s case alleging that Boeing receives illegal subsidies.

As the years-long legal process enters its final chapters, the lingering trouble lies in the biggest slice of Washington state’s aerospace tax incentives.

A WTO panel adjudicating U.S. compliance with previous rulings found that, while all other Boeing subsidies have been remedied, the state’s aerospace business tax rate reduction — worth about $800 million to Boeing since 2004 through last year — remains illegal and must still be fixed.

The ruling by the compliance panel is another legal step in an international trade dispute that has played out slowly over more than a decade: The U.S. sued the European Union in 2004 over Airbus
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The U.S. will appeal Friday’s ruling and the appeal won’t be decided for about another year. Only then might Boeing have to consider what it can do to bring the Washington state tax subsidies into WTO compliance.

U.S. government and Boeing officials spun the outcome as a victory because the other 28 state and federal funding programs challenged as subsidies in the dispute, amounting to an alleged $10.4 billion in subsidies to Boeing, have been addressed and are now resolved.

Read more: WTO upholds ruling against Washington’s tax reduction for Boeing | The Seattle Times

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