Bombardier flying on a subsidized wing and a NAFTA prayer

From the perspective of the Canadian taxpayer, it is difficult to conjure any sympathy for Bombardier, just kicked squarely in its C-Series cockpit by the U.S. Commerce Department’s plan to impose the hernia of a 219% import duty on its passenger jets.

The company has been taking Canadian taxpayers on a flight of its own financial fantasy since 1996 when it got its first taste of corporate welfare money.

Since then, its embracing of corporate welfare has been like an insatiable sugar addiction, thanks to spoon feeding of grants and generously-conditioned loans from the federal government and the province of Quebec.

Related… Theresa May threatens US with trade war over Bombardier row

  • The Butterfly

    Les parasites.

    • They sure like Tax dollars.

      • Alain

        The Liberals also love those kickbacks.

  • Brett McS

    At least they are Canadian. We had the ridiculous situation in Australia of propping up the local arms of Ford and GM for decades. Every Ford and GM (Holden) was costing the taxpayer about $12000. Can’t let those giant American multi-nationals go hungry!

    • We do the same with the Big 3 automakers in Canada, they have received hundreds of millions likely more like billions over the years to “keep jobs in Canada”. Meanwhile we negotiated a NAFTA deal with Mexico which pays its autoworkers a pittance in comparison to US and Canadian wage rates and wonder why investment is heading to Mexico.

      NAFTA was not so bad when it was America and Canada, because of like economies nowadays not so much.

      • The Butterfly

        Tens of billions.

      • The Butterfly

        The Canada-US free trade agreement made more sense. Adding Mexico to it made no sense at all.

        • Alain

          It only made sense to those big businesses for outsourcing work and the globalists as the first step towards eliminating nation state sovereignty.

      • Gary

        Don’t forget the Chrysler FIAT workers at the public trough . Obama gave GM 20 billion and now GM added 4 Joint-Venture auto plants in China while 1 of them opened in Shanghai just last year . Thanks to Obama an American buying a CT6 in 2017 is helping to employ a non-Unionized worker in China.
        I read that Cadillac in 2018 will make just 1 car Model from then on as a 4 door semi cross-over High Horse power unit .
        The SUV is still popular for rear wheel drive to haul trailers , but imagine the founders of Cadillac that bought it from Henry Ford just over 100 years ago and being told that one day their cars would be imported from China .
        FORD sold off jaguar and Land Rover which are now made i n India by TADA Motors that makes the same $1500.00 car locally that is also a coffin after a serious crash.
        I owned a 64 1/2 V8 Mustang and later in 1977 a 1968 Green fastback Bullitt type Mustang with black interior for $900.00. Today…..FORD imports the V8 5.0’s from China to keep the costs down while Louis Chevrolet would not believe that the Corvette is about 30% imported parts from China and mexico.

        Won’t be long before the Progressives and Globalists give us just 1 Auto maker that has just 4 Models with 2 electric and 2 gas engines under 2.0 Liters .

        • Clausewitz

          Explains why GM cars components fall apart after only two years. Used to buy GM cars exclusively until the last one I bought basically fell apart on the road after 18 months.

    • Clausewitz

      Don’t confuse a Quebec Company with a Canadian Company. They are not the same. Dimwit Trudeau even let it be known that Quebeckers are better than Canadians prior to the last election. Sadly no one listened so in the end you have the Feds shoveling money into one of the most inefficient corrupt corporations in Canada. Why? Because they are based in Quebec.

      • Ho Hum

        Bombardier employs 1,000’s of workers outside of Quebec – It’s factory in Toronto is the largest manufacturing plant left in the city and it produces the Q400 Turbo Prop and Global Express business Jets that sell for up to $70 Million a pop. In Thunder Bay Bombardier has a large factory (biggest employer in the city) that makes Subway cars and street cars.

        • Clausewitz

          Money always flows to head office. In this case from the bottom up from profits and from the top down from the government. The share structure of Bombardier is to say the least, “Unique”. The accountants at head office are a creative bunch of little buggers. They turn profits from sales of aircraft that they sell at below manufacturing cost (ie. DUMPING), but then create profits but only for the family shares but not the common shares. Quite interesting really.

  • Raymond Hietapakka

    ..the Bumbardier Family has a special-designated type of company stock that only they alone can possess…check it out. Bumbardier’s common stock holders must be pissed…

  • simus1

    Hugh Hefner has died. He and Bomba pretty much fit the same profile. A case of dumb luck getting into something at the right time, just riding a high wave with no real concept of how to build on it via solid talented management.

    The Northern Ireland branch of the rent seeking colossus builds Bomba C Series sub assemblies and is big trouble for Theresa May because her government is dependent on N.I. MPs to keep her in power.

    Selling aircraft is such a joke. Canadian companies can buy aircraft from Brazil with all kinds of “creative international financing” domestic moneybags could never hope to match. And Brazilian companies etc can do the same dance in reverse when buying foreign aircraft. The only sure thing is that at every step involving airliners, airlines, and the air travel industry, the taxpayers are getting screwed.

    • Exile1981

      The British government petitioned the US gov’t to drop the trade dispute for fear of loosing those 1200 Irish jobs.

  • Exile1981
  • Gary

    The one good thing about David Miller and Olivia Chow is that they opposed the Toronto island Airport expanding to accept STOL Jets which put 400 people out of work at Bombardier and was 400 less people I’m supporting with Corporate welfare.

    But the hypocrisy by Mayor Miller was when he brought in Robert Kenndy jr to push the Global warming crisis and denounce the Jets for pollution . Kennedy flew here by a PRIVATE jet to land at Pearson and take a V8 Limo to meet Mayor Miller.

  • PaxCan

    Not to come to the defense of Bombardier but Boeing has a very comfortable relationship with the U.S. government in the form of lucrative tax breaks and military contracts for which it owes its existence. It’s a case of pot meeting kettle.

    To drive Bombardier of out business will only work to the advantage of Boeing’s already subsidized privileged life. Indeed, the U.S. aerospace industry destroyed Avro because a Canadian company was taking away some of their business. I think this is the same case here.

    All government’s around the world subsidize their aerospace/hi-tech sectors to some degree. It’s pretty much de rigueur.

    • Clausewitz

      Up until the late 70’s Malton was the hub of the aerospace industry in Canada. Hawker Siddley, McDonell Douglas, and a host of sub contractors. Where was the government aid when those companies found themselves in Bombardier’s position?

  • What did these guys think that Trump would do? Carry on with this waste?

  • John

    Before crapping on Bombardier too much, we should remember that both Boeing and Airbus recieve enormous subsidies from gov’t. Boeing has recieved probably ten times more than Bombardier over the years.

    Aircraft are very prestige items, symbols of national pride, and to judge from what’s going on, gov’t subsidies are a way of life for this entire industry.

    I don’t think that Bombardier, Boeing OR Airbus have ever made an honest profit.

    I don’t condone the situation, but it IS pretty much the norm when it comes to building high-end aircraft

    • Clausewitz

      Don’t confuse selling product with government subsidies. Both Canada and Brasil heavily “Subsidize” their home companies. A defense contract is not a subsidy.

      • Ho Hum

        All countries with aircraft manufacturers subsidize the export of their product – the US has the Export Import Bank which facilitates sales of Boeing aircraft. The U.S. is no different from Canada and Brazil or Europe for that matter

  • Ho Hum

    The claims of subsidies to Bombardier for the C-Series program are false. The Quebec government invested a Billion in Bombardier in exchange for equity – the Canadian government loaned a similar amount that will be repaid. Completely legal under trade laws.

    Bombardier was attacked because it sold aircraft to Delta at a price less than its cost to build but this is how the aircraft business works. Manufactures always loose money on the first aircraft as they go through the learning curve. Boeing lost millions on each of the first hundred 787’s it delivered and is only now breaking even. This is the nature of the business.

    The fact is Bombardier employees 10,000’s of Canadian’s in good paying jobs. It should be held up as an example of a good corporate citizen not attacked as a corporate free loaders. The actions of the Trump administration are acts of economic war. Canada is being treated like North Korea. The American’s want to destroy a great Canadian company because it poses a threat to Boeing.

    To the extent that Bombardier receives government support we should be grateful that at least it is a Canadian company keeping jobs in Canada. The Canadian government bailed out GM Canada to the tune of $10 Billion only to see GM Canada continue to close down factories and move jobs to the US and Mexico (which did not contribute one dime to the bailout).

  • Ho Hum

    It’s ironic that Postmedia is publishing this article critical of what it falsely calls “subsidies” to Bombardier when at the same time it’s CEO – Paul Godfrey – is begging Ottawa to give it subsidies so that the failing Postmedia can continue to publish worthless garbage (while paying Godfrey a high seven figure salary) .