Bombardier: 10th October 2017

Anna Soubry (Broxtowe) (Con)
I had the great pleasure of going to the wings factory in Belfast, and I pay handsome tribute not just to the 4,000 workers there but to Bombardier in general and to the C series—it is a beautiful and exceptionally fine aeroplane, and we wish it great success. I also thank the Secretary of State and all his colleagues in the Government for the fine work they are doing, but does he share my concern that this decision, which we all hope will be overturned, marks a shift towards a more protectionist policy by the United States Government? Does he agree that that does not bode well, especially as we leave the EU, if we do not get a proper deal with the European Union?
Greg Clark
In my view, it underlines the importance of securing free trade not just with the European Union but around the world. The essence of a free trade agreement is that we have proper protections and dispute resolution mechanisms on which we can rely, so this issue underlines the importance of continuing free trade. As I say, it is not unusual in the aerospace sector for complaints to be made in one forum or another. I think all parties were expecting the initial determination to be as it was, and said as much. In terms of our work—we will not give up on this—we will fight to secure the legitimate future of this very important part of our aerospace sector, and we will do whatever it takes to do that.