The European Union and the United States took a fresh step yesterday in their dispute over subsidies for their airplane makers, agreeing...

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GENEVA — The European Union and the United States took a fresh step yesterday in their dispute over subsidies for their airplane makers, agreeing to name a senior Mexican trade official to gather information on financial support they may have provided to rivals Airbus and Boeing.

They agreed to appoint Mateo Diego-Fernandez to oversee the process, which involves collecting data on markets and similar companies from other World Trade Organization (WTO) members. The information will be used to assess the Airbus and Boeing subsidies.

The WTO set up legal panels two months ago to investigate cases brought by the two trade powers, which accuse each other of illegally subsidizing the aircraft makers.

But the European Union said it required more consultations before it could allow further investigations.

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“We are confident that the procedures which we have agreed upon will allow both the [EU] and the U.S. to prepare properly in each dispute toward a resolution of both disputes,” the EU told the WTO’s dispute-settlement body.

The United States said it was pleased that the EU “is finally willing” to allow the process to start, but stressed that Washington had been trying for more than two months to get things under way.