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Massive Bombardier duties short sighted

September 26, 2017

Toronto – The U.S. decision to impose massive preliminary countervailing duties against Bombardier’s C-Series plane is a short-sighted move that puts the continent’s aerospace industry at risk, Unifor says.

“The simple fact is that no country can have a viable aerospace industry without the involvement of government,” said Unifor National President Jerry Dias. “Boeing knows this as well as anyone else. The U.S. government invests $50 billion a year in aerospace, and Boeing gets a big chunk of that.”

The U.S. today imposed a preliminary countervailing duty of 219.63 per cent in response to a Boeing complaint that Bombardier was able to sell its new C-Series plane at a discount thanks to government support.

“This is a cynical and short-sighted move by Boeing, and could have a long-term impact on the industry in both countries,” Dias said.

Dias urged Boeing to drop its case, warning that a tit-for-tat trade battle would put the industry at risk in both Canada and the United States. Already, the Canadian government is warning that it will not do business with Boeing.

“The fact is, governments invest in this industry because it is a source of good jobs and brings innovation and technological advances to the country that are felt across the economy,” Dias said.

“We urge the federal government to push back against these duties and to stand by its right to invest in advanced industries that provide greater opportunities for future generations.”

Dias met with Boeing representatives in Washington earlier this month, urging the company to drop the case. Bombardier workers last week left their Downsview plant to hold a rally calling on Boeing to drop the case.

Bombardier is one of Canada’s largest employers with more than 24,000 workers across Canada, with an estimated 40,000 spin-off jobs at its suppliers. Aerospace creates or supports nearly 210,000 jobs across Canada and contributes about $28 billion yearly to Canada’s Gross Domestic Product.

Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing more than 315,000 workers in every major area of the economy, including more than 10,000 aerospace workers. The union advocates for all working people and their rights, fights for equality and social justice in Canada and abroad, and strives to create progressive change for a better future.

For more information, please contact Unifor Communications National Representative Stuart Laidlaw at stuart.laidlaw@unifor.org or (cell) 647-385-4054.