BRUSSELS (AP) — A first phone call Friday clinched the first trade breakthrough to start rebuilding trans-Atlantic relations between the United States and the European Union in the wake of the Trump presidency.
After U.S. President Joe Biden and EU Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen spoke, both sides decided to suspend tariffs used in the longstanding Airbus-Boeing dispute for the next four months.
Von der Leyen said that “as a symbol of this fresh start, President Biden and I agreed to suspend all our tariffs imposed in the context of the Airbus-Boeing disputes, both on aircraft and non-aircraft products, for an initial period of 4 months.”
It hardly covered all outstanding issues which were left to fester ever more under the four-year presidency of former president Donald Trump, but the EU gladly took whatever it could get from the first personal exchange between the two.
Von der Leyen called it “a very positive signal for our economic cooperation in the years to come.”
“This is excellent news for businesses and industries on both sides of the Atlantic,” she said.
With the initiative to ease the aircraft fight that long weighed on trade relations, the 27-nation bloc is seeking to rekindle the spirit of cooperation between Washington and Europe that has long defined global diplomacy.
Von der Leyen hopes it is the first indication that both the United States and Europe will stand shoulder to shoulder like they so often over the past century to face global…