EU trade chief nominee hopes for better trans-Atlantic ties

BRUSSELS — The Irishman set to take over as the European Union’s top trade official says he hopes the United States and the bloc can accelerate trade talks and avoid a tit-for-tat tariff war over Airbus and Boeing.

At a hearing by lawmakers Monday assessing his suitability to become next EU trade commissioner, Phil Hogan said that “unfortunately we have not seen much movement” in trans-Atlantic trade talks over the last year.

The World Trade Organization is set to allow President Donald Trump to slap tariffs on EU products in response to the Europeans illegally subsidizing Airbus, hurting U.S. competitor Boeing.

Hogan says such a move “doesn’t make sense” given that Europe would retaliate in coming months once the WTO rules on its case accusing the U.S. of illegally subsidizing Boeing.

The Associated Press