Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard came out swinging against Boeing Wednesday morning, following news the U.S. Department of Commerce is slapping a 219 per cent duty on the sale of Bombardier C-Series jets to Delta Airlines.
“Quebec has been hit at the heart of its economy, at the heart of our aerospace industry, our engineering, our innovation,” he said.
The preliminary ruling comes in the wake of a trade dispute with Boeing.
The American aerospace company had filed a complaint, arguing that its Canadian competition was selling its jets below market value thanks to subsidies by the federal and provincial governments.
The decision could have an impact on Bombardier’s deal with Delta Airlines, and may result in job losses in both Canada and Northern Ireland, where parts of the C-Series are built.
Couillard said this has nothing to do with subsidies, but rather that Boeing is trying to eliminate a competitor.
He said he remains confident this would not devastate the Montreal-based transportation giant because it would search for new markets outside the United States.
“We are going to continue to make this remarkable plane and we will continue to sell it all over the world,” Couillard said.
“We will work with true partners. Boeing may have won a battle, but let me tell you the war is far from over and we will win.”
Couillard added this could also affect the U.S. economy as the C-Series represents $30 billion and as many as 22,000 American jobs.
He said this decision by the U.S. Department of Commerce hurts the country as a whole.
He wants Canada to join him in fighting fire with fire.
“Not a bolt, not a part, of course not a plane of Boeing entering Canada until this conflict is resolved in a satisfactory way.”
The premier also called for unity in the Quebec National Assembly, inviting both opposition leaders to join him in a trip to Washington to try to change the minds of American lawmakers.