June 21, 2021
This Week in Trade for June 18
Last Week (June 14 — 18)
U.S. and EU Ratchet Down Trade Tensions. U.S. and EU leaders announced June 15 a five-year suspension of tariffs related to 17-year WTO trade dispute over civil aviation subsidies as well as the formation of a new Working Group on Aircraft to reach a lasting accord. USTR reached a similar accord with UK trade leaders later in the week. U.S. and European trade leaders, however, were unable to reach a resolution this week during President Biden's European trip, on the issue of section 232 steel and aluminum tariffs, the other outstanding major trade dispute. Instead they agreed to set up a Working Group to resolve the trade dispute within six months. In a related development, the U.S. and EU agreed to the formation of a Transatlantic Trade and Technology Council with the goal of setting joint standards around emerging technologies as opposed to China and working on semiconductor supply chain issues.
Following the Senate, House Prepares to Advance China Competition Bill. The House Science, Space and Technology Committee approved by voice vote June 15 the NSF for the Future Act, legislation to dramatically increase funding ($78 billion) for the National Science Foundation; the measure is related to the American Innovation and Competition Act which passed the Senate last week (and includes the Endless Frontiers Act). In addition, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), chairman of the House Ways and Means Trade Subcommittee, introduced legislation June 17 to renew the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA), Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) and Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB) trade programs; those measures are likely to be added to the NSF for the Future Act as the measure advances later this month to the House floor, likely requiring a conference committee to iron out the differences between the two chambers.