Boeing Files Petition With Commerce Dept. Over Bombardier -- Update

By Doug Cameron Features Dow Jones Newswires

Boeing Co. on Thursday called on U.S. trade officials to launch a probe into the sales practices of Bombardier Inc. for its new CSeries jet, which the U.S. aerospace giant said was being sold for less than it cost to manufacture.

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The move comes amid heightened trade tensions between the U.S. and Canada, centered on the lumber and dairy industries, though its unrelated to these issues, according to people familiar with the timing.

Boeing filed a petition with the U.S. Commerce Department and the International Trade Commission alleging Canadian state subsidies created an unfair competitive threat to its own 737 passenger jets.

Brazil has also lodged a complaint with the World Trade Organization over Canada's support for Bombardier, which competes with plane maker Embraer SA.

Boeing wants the U.S. to impose antidumping duties on imports of Canadian passenger jets. The International Trade Commission offers a potentially quicker route than through the World Trade Organization. The U.S. and the European Union have been embroiled for years in disputes related to subsidies provided to Boeing and Airbus SE.

"Boeing is asking the Department of Commerce and the ITC to take action to end Bombardier's illegal and unfair business practices before it is too late to prevent significant harm to America's aerospace industry and thousands of good-paying aerospace jobs," said the U.S. company in a statement.

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Boeing's move comes ahead of the delivery of CSeries jets to Delta Air Lines Inc., the first U.S. customer. Delta last year placed an order for 75 CSeries jets, providing the program with a marque customer after years of sluggish sales. Delta didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Boeing also said in its petition that Bombardier continues to try to sell the jet to United Continental Holdings Co. even after losing out to Boeing for a big order placed last year.

Bombardier said they are aware of the case and are currently reviewing the filing, said company spokesman Simon Letendre.

"Bombardier structures its commercial dealings to ensure compliance with the laws and regulations of the jurisdictions in which we operate, including those issues raised by Boeing," Mr. Letendre said.

David George-Cosh contributed to this article.

Write to Doug Cameron at doug.cameron@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

April 27, 2017 18:13 ET (22:13 GMT)