The announcement that the US and EU have agreed to suspend all tariffs relating to the Airbus and Boeing disputes for a four-month period has been welcomed by Irish ministers.

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue and the Minister for State Martin Heydon welcomed the announcement by both the EU Commission and the Office of the United States Trade Representative earlier this evening (Friday, March 5).

The two sides revealed a four-month suspension of tariffs on selected exports and imports between both blocs. These tariffs were introduced on selected Irish agri-food exports to the US in October 2019.

According to the Department of Agriculture, the value of Irish agri-food exports impacted by US tariffs, in 2019 figures, is approximately €422 million – attracting an additional €105 million tariffs in a full year. This 25% tariff was applied to Irish exports to the US on butter, worth €190.2million; cheese, worth €43.7 million; and Irish cream, valued at €184 million.

Minister McConalogue, in welcoming the announcement, said: “Today’s announcement is a great opportunity, for both the EU and United States, to engage in a constructive dialogue to find a permanent resolution to these long running disputes.”

Minister of State with responsibility for new market development Martin Heydon also welcomed the positive news and said:

“Hopefully, today’s announcement is a signal of the renewal of this historic, positive and enduring transatlantic relationship between the EU and the US.

This is a positive development for exports of Irish butter, cheese and Irish cream to the US market.

Minister McConalogue concluded by acknowledging the significant efforts by the Irish Embassy in Washington in “seeking to resolve this dispute and highlighting, the importance of the US market for our effected industries, to USTR officials”.