May hopes to boost Bombardier on trade mission to Canada

Justin Trudeau and Donald Trump

British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Monday she would press U.S. President Donald Trump this week about a trade challenge by Boeing Co that could endanger thousands of aerospace jobs in Northern Ireland.

OTTAWA-Prime Minister Justin Trudeau threatened Monday to scrap his government's planned purchase of Boeing Super Hornet fighter jets in direct retaliation for the US company's trade complaint against Bombardier.

Trudeau said defending Bombardier's "excellent" C-Series aircraft "is a priority for us" and he condemned Boeing, saying its motivation for launching the complaint is "extremely narrow" and "for trade-related reasons linked to their own profits".

"I will raise the issue of Bombardier when I meet with him again later this week", said May. Bombardier is the largest aerospace company in Canada.

Bombardier has been accused by Boeing of receiving unfair state support - including a £113m loan from the British Government - for its new C Series passenger jet.

"We recognize the rules in place around negotiation with the EU and EU members and we respect the need for the U.K.to determine its path forward with Brexit from the EU", said Trudeau.

The case was inspired by the 2016 purchase by Delta Air Lines to buy up to 125 C Series airliners from Bombardier. Bombardier's aerospace division employs 28,500 people worldwide. The Democratic Unionist Party agreed to prop up the May government earlier this year in return for economic investment in Northern Ireland. "I am very happy to be working with Prime Minister May to explain to the American administration how Boeing's actions are harmful to workers here in Canada", Trudeau told reporters.

"There will be a preliminary judgment in the USA next week in relation to this case but that will just be a preliminary judgment so it will be possible for us to continue to work together to try and bring about the resolution that we want", she said. A US trade court is due to give a preliminary ruling on Boeing's complaint on September 25. Trudeau's office did not immediately respond to a question about his use of the word "suing".

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