Pontifications: End appears in sight for 16-year old US-EU trade dispute

By Scott Hamilton

April 19, 2021, © Leeham News: There appears to be progress in resolving the 16 year long trade dispute between Airbus and Boeing. Finally.

The dispute officially is between the European Union and the United States. But neither political entity would have pursued a dispute but for complaints by Boeing and Airbus.

No recap of the trade dispute is required for LNA readers.

Airbus tariffs

The US imposed about $264m in tariffs on Airbus aircraft imported into the US since 2019.  Another $34m in tariffs were imposed on aircraft parts and components. Airbus A320s/321s assembled in Mobile (AL) were exempt from tariffs until late last year. The Trump Administration began imposing tariffs on fuselage, wing and other components imported from the EU then.

The World Trade Organization finally authorized the EU to impose tariffs on Boeing aircraft imported into the EU in October last year. Because of the Boeing 737 MAX grounding and the delay in recertification by the EU’s EASA regulator until January, no 737s were imported until then. Only a few were imported before the Biden Administration and the EU agreed to a four month suspension of tariffs to negotiate a settlement.

No Boeing 787s were imported into the EU, either from October through March. Boeing suspended deliveries while inspections were made.

The US tariffs applied to nearly $2.4bn worth of airplanes. The tariff rate initially was 10%, increasing to 15% in the final months of the Trump Administration. US content is airplanes isn’t taxed.

Stalemated talks

Talks throughout the long dispute—such as they were—went nowhere. The US (Boeing) demanded the EU (Airbus) not only cure past illegalities but give up reimbursable launch aid entirely. The WTO eventually ruled RLI isn’t illegal, per se. The below-commercial rates were illegal.

The EU refused the US demand and in turn said talks had to proceed first. Each side claimed that neither side fully satisfied the cures on illegal subsidies.

The larger concern

There is a larger concern. The EU and Airbus said a new agreement had to encompass China and Russia. Both countries generously subsidize their commercial aerospace industry. Neither hides nor disputes this fact.

Neither the EU nor US have been willing to press the issue, however, for fear of offending China. (Why not go after Russia hasn’t been explained.)

A former Boeing CEO of Commercial Airplanes explains that since none of the Chinese COMAC C919 orders were done on a competitive basis—they are dictated by the government—there is no way to know what the purchase prices are.

Maybe, but the state subsidies are clear.

More to the point, since in any given year, 25% or more of Boeing’s deliveries were destined for China, this probably had more to do with giving the subsidies a pass. The same is true for Airbus.

Resolving the EU-US dispute is in everyone’s interest. The Biden Administration is the first since President George W. Bush was in office to seriously pursue a resolution.

It’s long overdue.



106 Comments on “Pontifications: End appears in sight for 16-year old US-EU trade dispute

  1. Some companies prefer to try to compete in the courtroom rather than in the marketplace. Boeing is one of them. This approach:
    – Backfired badly in the case of Bombardier (ITC rejected Boeing’s complaint, and Airbus acquired Bombardier).
    – Has yielded nothing in the case of Airbus (WHO has ruled that tax breaks given to Boeing are also a form of state support; pointless sanctions both ways). Won’t it be ironic if Uncle Sam has to jump in and bail out Boeing in some shape or form?
    – Will only further aggravate the situation with China rather than alleviating it. The Cal seems to realize this, because he recently pleaded for trade to be kept separate from discussions of human rights / IP theft. Too late, however: China’s attitude to Boeing has already soured badly.

    Addressing the point raised in the article about Russia.
    – The sanctions introduced against Russia after its “annexation” of Crimea have achieved absolutely nothing.
    – Russia is a huge exporter of energy — not just to the EU, but also to the USA. The USA was Russia’s second largest oil product customer in 2020 (75 million tons).

    China is in a similarly comfy position with its exports of rare earth metals.

    • “Some companies prefer to try to compete in the courtroom rather than in the marketplace. ”

      It definitely is a US thing.
      Predominantly to fend of a competitor who produces the better more consistent product at higher quality.
      .. and it is not that different in other domains.
      Litigation leveraging convoluted legal interpretations is the preferred US tool to fend of competitors.

      The competitive advantage for the US used to the influx of extremely well educated immigrants as motor of innovation. This has dried up. What remains are native lawyers.

      • So I will state while recently Boeing strategy with respect to playing the tariff game meshes with your observations, their initial case for the state subsidies back in the 2000s does not really align with this. I will acknowledge the tax subsidies strategy employed in the US is a form of subsidy that pits local and regional governments against each other at the enrichment of private entities and returns marginal benefits to regions beyond jobs. However, it was used in response to what used to be the order of the day in Europe. I think public funding is an important tool in scientific advancement and encouraging innovation towards more beneficial outcomes for public good, but when it comes to sectors that do actually have a positive track record for private enterprise (see deregulation of aviation industry) as opposed to debacles in privatization (see UK rail, utilities in the US, etc.), there should not be public funding with exception of proof of concept development and infrastructure improvements.

        • I read that Boeing’s carbon fibre fuselage knowledge came from a military contract (typically cost-plus contract of that era), correct me if I am wrong.

        • back in the ?90ties? we saw contention about subsidies.

          EC was doing direct subsidies to unify and keep relevant aerospace capabilities. Center project Airbus coop.
          US had the upmarket position enabled by the post WWII situation and a massive influx of highly qualified and inventive people ( and not as self perception saw it: “super competitive and innovative, unreachable by others ).
          Lots of subsidies were transfered via the military, NASA grants, tax gifts.

          Outcome was that US military, NASA “research” and tax gifts were to be seen as equal to the new EC/EU Instrument of RLI ( IMHO a truly risk capitalist investment steering tool. and replacing sunk moneys )

          RLI was successful, a real giver to the lenders.
          Unacceptable for the US : subsidies that were paid back and then some! abomination. destroy on sight!

          next step: ignore the standing solution and squawk about unfair EU subsidiees: i.e. RLI. ( i.e. ignore the negotiated pairing from the past and start another round of overboarding demands.

        • The USA is well able to give state aid to corporations — if necessary via all sorts of side doors:

          What’s hilarious is that, just 2 years ago, US carriers where whinging and shouting about unfair government subsidies to Gulf Carriers…but, in the meantime, those same US carriers have accepted massive CoViD bailouts and subsidies from Uncle Sam. A case of the pot calling the kettle black.

          • I understand Airbus carbon fiber technology came subsidized and endlessly re-negotiated upwards because they can’t deliver A400 contract.

            Correct me if I am wrong.

            Or we can accept tech works both ways and quit beating that horse to death.

            How far back do you want to tech composites? I fiberglassed a number of boats.

          • A400M was a carbon fibre wing , just ahead of the A350 project. So cant have hurt it. However the A350 development took long enough
            and included fuselage as of course production to the high standard is a bigger issue for carbon fibre.
            ‘The A400M spar is made by automatic tape laying (ATL) of carbon fiber over a flat tool …This flat pack of unidirectional material is then hot-drape formed (see photo, p. 30) to the final shape over a male tool. Then, the shaped laminate is transferred to a female Invar tool for final cure.”
            “By contrast, the A350 spars are built up in one step by AFP on a rotating mandrel, yielding two parts (port and starboard spars) in their net shapes at the same time ”
            Different prepregs amoung other changes
            The A400 delays came from the engine side of the development, well talked about here.

          • Don’t forget BA’s endless 787 composite fuselage troubles: open heart surgery coming to rescue costing hundreds of million or billions?

          • @TW:
            “I understand Airbus carbon fiber technology came subsidized and endlessly re-negotiated upwards because they can’t deliver A400 contract.”

            That doesn’t even parse.

            and a hint: look into what happens around Stade 🙂

    • Would I believe the CEO of an airline in China know how much WN/UA/AS pay Boeing for their 737s? Why we should take the words from the mouth of the president of BCA as fact? It’s easy to think those guys are incompetent, greedy or corrupt, if COMAC is the product of government largesse, why on earth BA/AB have to be so fearful? It’s easy to cry for state intention when your products are inferior i.e. Boeing vs. Bombardier, Nokia/Ericsson in 5G.

      • COMAC is not largese, its owned and directed totally by the Chinese government.

        Democracies get the dirty laundry aired out. I will take that over the other.

        • Widely reported:

          Fake news spread like wildfire (in our late stage Capitalism);
          Money buys access to Congress.

          Democracy, is a fig leaf, in both first and third worlds.

          • I have to point out you are welcome to join the collective of your choice.

          • Haven’t you heard of kibbutz? Guess not.

            If the republic is a true democracy, how come so many (from the minority party) in congress, against the wish of a majority of GOP voters, voted against the Infrastructure Plan??

            Empty words and hot air are not going to strengthen your argument, they expose the void. Time to dial back!

          • Pedro:

            Its off topic, but the reality is you don’t see people immigrating to Russia or China,

            You might ponder the reasons for that.

            There is no nirvana. The FAA has always had issues. Boeing has always had crashes.

            Believing in Urban Legends is a recipe for disappointment.

            That beautiful looking lake on the other side of the hill is Alkali, let your horses drink and you have a dead team.

          • Haven’t you heard of ppl moved from TW to settle in SH?? Guess not.

            Haven’t you heard of ppl moved from U.S. back to China?? Guess not.

            Haven’t you heard of Korean gamers being harrassed in U.S.?? Guess not.

        • @TW:

          “The perfect dictatorship would have the appearance of a democracy, but would basically be a prison without walls in which the prisoners would not even dream of escaping. It would essentially be a system of slavery where, through consumption and entertainment, the slaves would love their servitudes. ”

          Sounds familiar??

      • The case of China is a classic case of double standards and short term self interest by western corporations and Governments. While the EU and USA destroy each other over trivial issues the same corporations mindlessly let themselves loose IP and in fact let themselves be robbed of intellectual property through the joint ventures they operate within to gain access to Chinese markers and to make cheap good there to export to western countries thereby damaging western jobs. Huge trade barriers exist in accessing Chinese markets but it’s convenient for some to turn a blind eye.

          • At the center is “no coop with a foreign majority stake”.
            Good solution to avoid getting robbed like the other workbench nations.

            Western nations: politics is the tool for corporations/market participants to work with.
            corporations -> politics -> population
            China: market driven production is the tool for politics.
            population -> communist party -> production, …

          • I can’t remember when was the last time China imposed tariff on aircraft parts (even those for assembly of aircraft in the country);
            or airframer in China asked the state to intervene in a market dumping case even though it had no product to compete in that segment;
            or imposed tariff on metal from “allies” for “national security” reason.

            Which is a worse offender of setting up market barriers??

  2. Good luck with Russia and China. Is there any reason at all for either country to pay any attention? Or to think they are stupid enough to not spot this for what it is: an anti-competitive team up between the USA/Boeing and EU/Airbus to thwart the emergence of competitors?

    • Agreed. Except that I don’t think the EU and US will be doing much “teaming up”. That relationship started to cool under GWB, further stagnated under BHO and went off a cliff under DJT. As a result, the EU is already following its own policy with regard to both countries, e.g. as evidenced by the CAI.
      At present, the relationship between China and Russia is much cosier than that between the US and EU.

    • > Is there any reason at all for either country to pay any attention?

      Both Russia and China will eventually want/need to sell outside their domestic market, especially Russia.

      The moment they have a serious shot at a large sale in the US or Europe (and to a lesser degree other WTO countries) they will need to pay attention. Till then they will develop their capabilities with the help of state help. And to be fair Airbus did the same.

      • Does the same logic apply to U.S./EU? Are “they” seriously contemplating to shut themselves out of China/Russia: jets, luxury goods and cars?? VW and GM are selling millions of cars in China and that market is a major contributor to the turn around of Daimler and BMW last year. When you start a war, have you think of where, when and how to end it?? Think poor Afghan!

        • @ Pedro
          Excellent point.
          There’s this persistent, old-school notion that “western” countries are on a prosperous height, whereas other countries lie in commercial supplication at their heels. That’s changed now: in the new scheme of things, “western” countries can only fund themselves if they can sell interesting goods to prospering newcomers. It’s particularly noteworthy that, in the “Phase 1” trade talks between the US and China 2 years ago, the only thing that the US could throw into the balance to try and even out the trade deficit was…(drum roll)…cattle feed (soy).

          Why would Russian/Chinese aircraft OEMs bother with the US and EU? Apart from their own large domestic markets, they have the whole of Africa and South America, and much of the Middle East and Asia to sell to first.

          • Is WTO under the full control of U.S./E.U.? I thought it’s supposed to be an international organization that works for international good, guess not.

            How come U.S. refuses to follow WTO’s ruling, while preaching others to follow its rules??

            Even a young climate activist from Sweden can see thru and has called out the naked vaccine nationalism by the Anglo-Americans.


            In February 2006: Canadian officials countered that the U.S. was continuing to artificially inflate anti-dumping rates by using different calculation methods to avoid complying with an earlier WTO decision.

        • “When you start a war, have you think of where, when and how to end it?? Think poor Afghan!”

          For the US blowback in any form is invariably pereceived unexpectable and strongly unfair. How could they!

          • China aspires to sell outside as well, they just can’t get a state elephant certified.

            You have to develop a system not a single product.

        • My point was that companies routinely get state aid to jumpstart domestic capabilities, as Airbus got from the EU, but once that capability is established and the company wants to sell globally trading partners will insist the state aid end.

          So in the context of China, once COMAC begins to sell outside China not only will the state aid will come under scrutiny. If an effective response is possible is another question.

          • jbeeko:

            Not quite accurate.

            Tehre is a difference between jump start and owning and directing.

            Airbus was an example of a merge of European entities (mainly UK, Spain (latter?) France and Germany .

            But then they took their hands off it and as they had background in commercial aircraft and a fresh start, they came out with some interesting products (no I was not keen on two engines over ocean like my A300 ride from Taiwan to the Philippines!) The A320 was clearly an out of the ball park home run. The A330CEO was another one (granted Boeing screwed up the 787 and in the wildest aircraft market of all time Airbus had the right product to sell)

            China owns and controls absolute by direct Government ownership, not incentives to jump start.

            Where Chinese business is free to compete and is not government owned they can do fine to very good.

            Russia is more in the Chinese mold now. Its all about nationalism and not about jump starting.

            Russia has one advantage in that they worked to get the certification that China failed so miserably on and still is. Russia also invested in advance tech not copy tech.

            Ergo, the 929, China wants it totally under them, but they need the Russian tech and certification.

            It will never fly as China can’t get what it wants and Russia is not going to give it up.

          • Interesting observation. Russian aerospace, historically, was / is fairly insular but developed quite notable machines: largest plane, the formidable Migs, a space vehicle use by the USA, rocket engines used by the West. I can see why they would want to be protective. That’s in contrast to, let’s say The Dreamliner Program…

          • The US via NASA was one of the few nations that has not been “protective”. I don’t think we should give up our intellectual capital but I am not in charge.

            Russia certainly has both the right and is entitled to control and benefit from what they develop as is any country.

            There always been a tension and it always will be. Like a Democracy, which is no where near perfect. As Winston said (I believe ) is just the best alternatives.

            If you want perfection you are in the wrong Universe.

            The question is and always will be, can anyone list a Dictatorship owned company that is remotely competitive or world class?

  3. What has occurred in the last 20 years has turned this into irrelevancy (and maybe it always was)

    While many of our EU friends use false equivalency and then should, ah hah!

    Like the WTO itself, its a joke. Much like EU emissions standards, there are so many loopholes you don’t even need to cheat.

    When this started, Airbus has distorted the market with Government subsides. Whats odd is they succeeded in created a functional company.

    Boeing has gone down the track of Corporate Welfare without the socialist twist, ie, all one way, give nothing back. Shares given to the Management as salary and share buy back and even unearned dividends have all corrupted the system (which never was perfect but did work vastly better at one time). Oh, lets not forget accounting practices.

    Applying the so called rule to China is inconvenient in the reality you would actually have to sanction them. Wink wink, nod nod.

    And when your energy flows are from Russia, well you can’t risk that getting cut off either can you? (ps, lots of oil and gas around, you just have to work at a bit more, can’t have that)

    Dump it all, the WTO, and just go with Tarriffs and it works fine. After all, that is what the competition does.

    • The U.S.’s past action proved WTO is toothless. Another fig leaf of international order. Useful only against the third world. (See my cbc link above)

    • Apparently:
      Grounding issues on 737 are wider scoped than Boeing conceded.

      • Gerrard:

        Boeing needs to tell WS to stick it like Costco did, create a good business and you will prosper.

        • @TW

          So many years of panhandling WS you figure BA knows any different

          You can not recognise a zombie when you see one

          Well, Chairman Cal can

          • GW:

            I think he knows different, I don’t think he can be different if that makes sense.

            The discussion about Calhoun being transformative or a holding action at best, no a Zebra can’t change its stripes.

            A Super Tanker cannot stop and turn on a dime.

            Calhoun’s brain is fossilized and there is no changing it. He is, was and always will be stratified.

          • @TW

            The word you are looking for is zombie

    • @ Gerrard

      And, from well-known investor site The Motley Fool, we also have a vote of no confidence:

      “In short, Boeing’s commercial jet business is likely to be significantly smaller and less profitable going forward than it was a few years ago. Given that commercial jets were Boeing’s biggest cash cow prior to the 737 MAX grounding, this subpar outlook makes Boeing an unattractive stock.”


    • A bit like the 777X: too big, too heavy, too expensive, too few orders = no future.

      • No, like the A340.

        What the future for the 777X is, I make no predictions. It may crater, it may be a mild seller, it sure is not going to be a 777-300ER. But then the A350 is not yet either.

        But a 4 engine fuel guzzling air frame is not going to cut it. The 777X has the right combo of two engines and efficient.

        Bjorn says designed right it can, but not a re-hashed legacy model.

        The real market clearly is the 787/A330 (was) and maybe the A350-900.

        • Well, then, why not add the 747-8 to the mix?
          Also had 4 engines, also was a flop.
          Unlike the A340, it attempted 4 engines at a time when it was known that 4-engined planes had no future.
          Just 155 orders…less than half of the A340’s 375 orders.

          See…the US isn’t that different from Russia after all.
          At least the Russians pulled out before wasting even more money.

          • No disagreement. Like the A340, one of the worlds most beautiful aircraft (in the F version, I never did like the full long Pax hump)

            The 747-8F is going to be a collectors item for the next 100 years! There simply is nothing flying nor will be flying to ever mach it.

            The 747-8I is going to be a hot commodity coming off Lufthansa etc (note they kept it and dumped the A380?)

            Yep, the 747-8 was a commercial failure. But its a freighter success for the firms lucky enough to have bought them. UPS got all they cold at the end.

            The A340 was sold on buy back (I assume you did not know that). If it did not make the cut Airbus bought them back.

            I never did see a good explain as to why Boeing launched the 747-8, it sure did not make commercial sense. The 787 did (the failure on management execution is not the tech success)

            But then those are all government decisions of a dictatorship aren’t they?

            Much easier when you don’t have to deal with votes and all that.

          • Both British Airlines and Qantas are optimistic that their A380s are going to return to service.

          • Pedro:

            The common refrain in the English language is that there are exceptions to the rule.

            I assume you mean that Airbus should spent about 25 billion for all of (20?) A 380 for two Airlines that it works for?

            Well then I have a project for you. Make a 350 passenger aircraft that can fly 12,000 miles so that Australia can buy 10 for the Sunset route.

            ps: Good luck with that.

          • Conveniently ignored the elephant in the room: EK.

            Rinse, repeat

  4. So let me get this right The US is trying to have strangle hold on China for technologies used on the C919 (same ones on the imported 737) and US is put sanctions on Russia that effected the MC21 (composites, engines and subsystems) which caused UAC to do major redesign and retesting

    So why would they both to agree to be part of any new Large Commercial Aircraft Agreement? Best estimate to date, China put over $50 billion USD into the ARJ21, C919 and CR929 programs. But the time C919 ramps up production and the CR929 is flying in 2030, over $75 billion in subsidies The horse has already left the barn

    • Well I think the whole herd has.

      Russia had the right idea, but it fails in execution of support.

      The flip is when you become independent of world class supply you also have to supply world class equipment and support for it. Russian cannot do that.

      Only the EU countries would put themselves at severe peril by linking h themselves into Russian gas and oil.

      An Airline is going to take a look at it and, no way Jose. Its a recipe to go broke and this business is already a recipe to go broke.

  5. Just info on MC 21

    “Deputy Prime Minister Yury Borisov said on Wednesday that the MC-21 market entry was undermined by the U.S. sanctions, and up to 40% of its on-board equipment had to be replaced as it was foreign-made.”

    • That is an issue that will be routed around in the long run.

      Some of my customer project have a longstanding prerequisite to avoid US content. US politics in that domain is invariably fickle and a PITA.

      • @Uwe

        You have noted a significant and overlooked fact with regard to the volatile yet ever increasing exercise of sanctions by the US, in parallel with the ever expanding definition of US content or IP and it’s extension to third parties

        The unilateral greyzone implementation as a substitute for policy or diplomacy

        Sanction purpose and definition is obscure and ever changing : i.e. corrupt

        Coupled with erratic unreliable and unpredictable declarations of such have indeed lost US esp US Tech many clients

        It is a form of hostage taking even more cynical than the human right chit chat

        Why buy from a client who’s gvmt will use that purchase against you and/or your clients/suppliers etc

        Use sanctions and they will bite you back – or how to shoot yourself aka BA Max MCAS

        One link among many


    • And now you raise a key point that has been discussed here before, i.e:
      “When you put sanctions on a technologically competent country, all you achieve is that you will force that country to become even more resourceful”.

      If/when the Chinese/Russians can produce a plane without any “western” parts (including engines), then they’ll have a field day selling planes to all those nations that have been disenfranchised by “the west”.

      • Bryce:

        Russia has the capability to build engines.

        It never has sold a commercial engine into the world market.

        You might want to ponder on the slap stick response and try to understand the details of why things do or do not work.

  6. To put all in perspective

    From NYT Mar 17: the U.S. spent over $50 billion for airline bailouts

    BA lost at least $20 billion over its duct tape solution called MCAS

    BA forecast China would buy about 6,500 NB and 1,600 WB over next twenty years or so, worths $1.4 trillion based on list prices

    If China spent $50 billion (assuming such figure is credible I’m no expert but I have a few doubts) and get two jet programs off the ground (more or less), build up-to-date production plants for two jets and grow its own contractors, isn’t it well-spent??

    • What about Chinas airline bailouts , or is that not on your approved talking points ?
      the Y-20 showed they cant even build their own military airlifter without ‘shanzhai’

      • @DoU

        Read Chairman Cal’s diversity memo – no racism allowed

        Read Chairman Cal’s plea to cut out the cheapo Yank nationalism and open up the China Market

        You are sounding all too much like your suspended alter ego

        • Just pointing out the supposed claim of a new military plane , roughly in the class of a 767 is a copy of another countries model already in service.
          How on earth are the going to build from scratch much complex civilian airliner. The japanese managed 2 military planes one a 737 size and the other 767 size in the last 15 years. So China can clearly do it but the shanzhai instinct is strong.
          We have noticed the usual patriotic commentators chiming in….more shanzhai ?

          • @DoU

            More racism – doubling down does not get you out of the hole

            Who invented the train? You guessed – it got copied and copied and improved and so on

            Ditto the airplane, the jet airplane, the turbofan even your grandmother’s apple pie

            Take patriotism racism exceptionalism nationalism- all those isms now are wasms- out of the discussion of process and procedure so that a rational reasonable understanding of industrial development can take their place

          • Very much depends on how you define the term “copy”.
            For example, you still think that the C919 is a “copy” of the A320.
            By that broad definition, every plane is a “copy” of the DC3, for example, since they all have a tubular fuselage and wings, and wing-mounted engines. Similarly, every car on the roads today is a “copy” of the Model T, since they all have a chassis, engine, gearbox and wheels. Oh, and one shouldn’t forget that every road in the US is a “copy” of the original paved roads developed by the Romans.

            I notice the royal “we”…let me see, where did that crop up before?
            Ah, yes…hi Rob 😉

          • Didn’t the U.S. get inspirations from the German’s rocket technology, or did they steal it??

          • @Bryce

            I have to say this – no one will like it I am sorry

            You are almost 100% accurate – yet it’s not the real thing @Rob, it’s a copy, a rip off

          • You guys really do not understand technology.

          • @TW

            You mean copying when you use that old greek word – look it up! it means…

      • Posters here kept saying the Chinese couldn’t even built fuselages that were up to standard.

        Now they flip and spread endless fear of losing market share.

        Can’t they make up their mind??

        • @Pedro
          Flip flop is how you know there is no mind to be made up

          It’s nationalism or racism or both pretending to think

      • in contrast to the US China has no dogma on “no government money, small government”.
        So china keeping their airlines alive is not ideologically forbidden.
        But it is for the US. in Theory. In the Real World this is only a thing when the US wants to lean on other nations.

        What is the word: bigotry?

        • @Uwe

          What is the word?

          Pick any word to describe what happens when a foolish and blind assumption of superiority meets the real world

          The Romans or was it the Greeks called it hubris, in this form it’s racism – pick any word that rhymes with stupid

          • The Roman downfall coincides with taking up the Christian “Only One God and it Ours” faith.
            From a nation of cool engineers to a bunch of superstitious intolerant …

          • @Uwe

            There is a fervent religious dominant in current US ideology which expresses itself as increased contempt/dismissal of generally accepted material/rational considerations to the exclusion of any recognition of other cultures in favour of… a jihad mentality beacon on the hill

            Engineering is for the dalits

          • ” .. Engineering is for the dalits ..”

            This works as long as you have a reserve of competent engineers to keep machines running and leverage your religious jihad.

            As I wrote: the US used to have a massive influx of
            well educated innovative academics with a synergetic coop mindset.
            The productive cycle for those is immigrant and first maybe second generation. After that they have been assimilated into the nonconstructive “competition at any price” middle of the society. US competition workings today are mostly redistributive. Value add is from “Magerwiesenwirtschaft” abroad.

      • Name your so called “Chinas airline bailouts”.

        When, how much was spent, which airline etc.

        If not, then shut up.

    • To put all in perspective

      In March 2015, USAF planned to spend a total US$43.16 billion (2015 dollar) for 179 tankers. What have they gotten in return??

      • so far they have gotten 44, and the US Govt has paid Boeing close to 44/179ths of the total projected cost (plus some progress payments on in-production birds)

        The KC-46 is one of the few government contracts not to have significant (government) cost growth because it was negotiated as FFP.

        boeing, however, has eaten about $5B in cost overruns on the program. they way it should be.

        • Are the 44 delivered performing as design? Why taxpayers have to pay for a pile of junk?

          The Navy decided to retire LCS2 early, wasting billion or more??

    • The Hill: The F-35 May Be Unsalvageable

      The 2021 reviews of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) are in, and they are not glowing.

      On Jan. 14, 2021, then-acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller labeled the JSF a “piece of [expletive].” Then, on March 5, 2021, House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith (D-Wash.) called the program a “rathole,” and asked whether it was time to stop spending that much money for “such a low capability?”

      The JSF has become the embodiment of the Defense Department’s (DOD) broken weapons acquisition system, which has been on the Government Accountability Office’s High-Risk List since 1990. The F-35 was originally conceived as the low-end of a high-low strategy consisting of numerous cheap aircraft that would replace Cold War workhorses like the F-16 and A-10, among other aircraft. The plan was for the JSF to be complimented by a smaller fleet of more advanced fighters, to be developed later.

    • Singapore’s A330 MRTTs reach full operational capability

      How much longer does the USAF have to wait for their KC-135 replacement?

    • And yea, the 787 is now built entirely in Charleston.

      Kind of means you don’t need a Dreamlifter Center in Washington State.

      You are aware the Everett factory is working on being empty?

      Old song about land, lots of land and starry skies above.

      In short if Boeing does a program (ever again) they won’t need the Dramlifter Center for 100 years.

      Nice move for FedEx as it gets them away from the soon to be over crowded SEATAC and a nice quiet country airport they have lower rent and elbow room.

      FedEx does not like being at major airports. The business model is just to be near large cities.

      • Everett has missed out from having Southwest starting regular flights as they have chosen Bellingham 60 miles further north.
        They want to tap the Vancouver market just across the border as they will offer cheaper flights to US destinations. May be still worth while to drive from Everett to Bellingham ?

  7. Look at this! But be forewarned — there’s a risk that you’ll fall off your chair laughing!

    CNBC: “Boeing raises mandatory retirement age for CEO Calhoun by 5 years, CFO to retire”

    “Chairman Larry Kellner said the board’s decision was based on “the substantial progress Boeing has made under Dave’s leadership, as well as the continuity necessary to thrive in our long-cycle industry.””


    Excuse me, but what’s the “substantial progress Boeing has made under Dave’s leadership”?

    • @Bryce

      I know what you mean when you say the progress BA has made is all backwards

      Still – look at it from the WS point of view : what’s not to like

      He’s loaded the company with debt, and is selling off all the assets he can apart from those which do not fly so good

      He’s come out of the diversity closet and now speaks with the boldest corporates as to local politics and to international

      DoD hasn’t terminated, not yet

      He’s kept the FAA on a tight leash with minimal concessions despite the passenger deaths

      There’s no one else TINA as they used to say

    • Well, he spun himself out from under the reality that he was a big part of the recent failures into being CEO!

      Now that is an accomplishment.

      Me? If I had that kind of money I would quit and go enjoy life.

    • Clearly there is a power play going on. Smith lost.

      Leeham can tell us if its good, bad or a pass.

    • ““substantial progress Boeing has made under Dave’s leadership’
      The cash flow from new build and parked 737s being delivered to airlines has returned.

      • So has the cash outflow needed to compensate carriers for new groundings…both of the 737MAX and the 787. On top of that, the deposits associated with the avalanche of MAX cancellations have to be repaid. And then there’s the billions being thrown at the KC-46 in an attempt to de-lemonize it, aswell as the vast costs of existing and new lawsuits.

        • Nearly 90 stored 737s delivered to customers who then paid up.
          Another 10 new Max orders from a Leasor Dubai Aerospace ( DAE)
          The Everett Dreamlifter buildings were owned by Snohomish county and only leased by Boeing, problem fixed.

          • @DoU

            Selling 90 737s is turning the company around?

            Chairman for Life got paid more than the company made on those sales

            The buildings were leased not owned – so that’s ok? You mean they made no money on the sale?

            The other unsaleable planes?

            @Robbot copy Upgrade required

          • Wow…90 deliveries! And what about the 156 cancellations in March alone?
            And you forgot that McB is making very thin (or even zero/negative) margins on these “PR sales” of the MAX, so those headlining sales in the past few weeks don’t shore up the balance sheet at all.

          • @DoU Are you dreaming??

            According to WN’s filing, WN is not paying anything on top of PDP for its B737 MAX 8 delivery in this year.

      • @DoU

        Progress has been made on the destruction of the company

        Homeless- Debt Loaded asset stripped workforce cut in half and stripped of skill-

  8. Good Morning Chairman Cal

    There is a silver lining

    WASHINGTON, April 20 (Reuters) – The U.S. Transportation Department’s Office of Inspector General said on Tuesday it will audit the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) November decision to unground the Boeing 737 MAX and other agency decisions.

  9. Great news that someone is thinking about sorting the mess out.

    There was even a side circus involving deHavilland Canada (Bombardier) and Embraer.

    Protectionists are always trying to coopt government force. Often there are unintended, but predictable, consequences, such as Japanese manufacturers moving upscale from small pickup trucks and Europe retaliating against the US with the ‘chicken tax’ which hurt consumers in Europe..

    There’s also the reality that restrictions of one industry hurt another. There was a great cartoon in a Seattle newspaper decades ago, a medieval castle turret with figures labelled with industries such as Textile saying “We have to keep those foreigners out.” but one labelled Boeing saying “But they are our customers.”

    And unions play the protectionist game, getting black-skinned conductors off of trains and blocking female pilots from flying airliners in the US. Supposedly those persons who flew hastily built airplanes then ferried them across the stormy North Atlantic were temperamentally unsuited to fly in the supported environment of domestic airline routes and airports.

    Protectionists are scammers.

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