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Airbus criticizes US Inflation Reduction Act for challenging European aerospace firms

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The head of European planemaker Airbus criticized the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act on Tuesday, saying the law could make it more difficult for the European Union to accelerate its own decarbonization efforts.

Airbus Chief Executive Guillaume Faury said the law, which boosts U.S. investment in renewable energy products, “is destabilizing the level playing field” between U.S. and European companies by providing subsidies that could draw business into the United States.

During a speech at the Aero Club in Washington, Faury said Airbus welcomed the "very strong momentum" the new law provides on green energy, particularly on hydrogen power, but added it was "absolutely essential" that fair competition be maintained.

Faury added that Europe and the United States have different approaches for generating progress on decarbonization, with the U.S. government favoring subsidies and European Union preferring the use of mandates. "A combination of both is what will work in the end," he said.

According to the White House, the Inflation Reduction Act, which became law last year, provides $370 billion in investments aimed at boosting domestic clean energy technology development and manufacturing.

The European Commission put forward its own green industry proposal earlier this month.

(Reporting by Valerie InsinnaEditing by Marguerita Choy, Bill Berkrot and David Gregorio)