Kansas Senator Alleges Illegal Subsidies at Embraer
Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) claims that general aviation, still struggling through a stalled economy, is facing “unfair international competition. Some foreign governments are heavily subsidizing–sometimes illegally–their domestic aircraft industries,” he said in a statement last week. He singled out Embraer in particular, claiming that the Brazilian OEM is now responsible for about 14 percent of all global sales of business aircraft. He noted that Embraer has been manufacturing business aircraft for only about seven years, adding that the company's growth “does not seem possible without heavy and creative government support across the board.” Brownback called for an analysis by the U.S. International Trade Commission to focus, in particular, on the business aircraft industry in the U.S., China, Brazil, Canada and Europe, examining the composition of the current industry and the factors of competition in the global industry. Embraer responded by saying its recent success with business aircraft is not the result of government subsidies. “Embraer did not use launch aid or any other illegal subsidies to develop its business jets portfolio or the equally successful E-Jet family of commercial aircraft [and it] did not use any public funds for either family,” the company said.