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	 Theresa May threatens US with trade war

Theresa May threatens US with trade war

THE TELEGRAPH UK – GORDON RAYNER, LAURA HUGHES, IAIN WITHERS

Theresa May has threatened a trade war with the US after it slapped punitive tariffs on British-built aircraft, casting doubt on a key plank of her Brexit strategy.

The US Department of Commerce decided Bombardier aircraft, built in Northern Ireland, should be subject to 219 per cent import duty after the American aviation giant Boeing complained that Bombardier had been given unfair state aid.

The Government responded by warning that Boeing’s behaviour “could jeopardise” future Ministry of Defence contracts for its aircraft such as Apache helicopters.

The Prime Minister has appealed directly to President Donald Trump to intervene in the dispute, which has dented her hopes of signing a post-Brexit free trade deal with the US.

The escalating row has also put the Conservatives’ relationship with the DUP under strain, as Bombardier employs more than 4,000 people at its Belfast factories.

Mrs May said yesterday she was “bitterly disappointed” with the decision of the US Department of Commerce to propose an interim tariff of more than 219 per cent on the import of Bombardier C-Series jets to the US.

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