Airbus says WTO pinpoints massive Boeing subsidies

PARIS Mon Jan 31, 2011 11:44am EST

PARIS Jan 31 (Reuters) - Europe's Airbus EAD.PA claimed victory in the latest round of a transatlantic subsidy dispute on Monday, saying the World Trade Organization had found U.S. rival Boeing (BA.N) absorbed "massive and illegal" U.S. support.

Airbus said a final WTO report on a European counter-suit against the United States in a protracted legal battle would show that Boeing received "at least $5 billion" and would not have been able to launch its 787 Dreamliner without illegal aid.

Boeing promptly denied having launched the 787 with the support of subsidies. "We did not," Ted Austell, vice president of executive, legislative and regulatory affairs for Boeing government operations, told Reuters.

He declined to comment on the rest of the findings, ahead of their publication in a few weeks. But two U.S. sources familiar with the case said the tally cited by Airbus appeared to add nothing new to a draft circulated to parties last year.

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