Monday

20th Feb 2017

EU in new trade case against US and Canada

The EU on Monday (8 November) announced the launching of WTO action against the US and Canada.

Both countries are refusing to lift trade sanctions on the EU amounting to 116 million US dollars per year plus 11 million Canadian dollars per year, which were imposed after the EU slapped a ban on importing hormone beef.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

  • US beef causing trouble (Photo: EUobserver)

The World Trade Organisation (WTO) deemed the EU ban illegal because it was not based on proper scientific research.

The EU consequently conducted an independent scientific research project and changed its laws to comply with the WTO ruling.

But the US and Canada have still not lifted their sanctions, prompting Monday's action.

Sanctions must go

"The EU ban on certain growth-promoting hormones is now in full respect of our international obligations", said EU trade commissioner Pascal Lamy.

"There is no reason why European companies should continue to be targeted by sanctions when they export to Canada and the United States", he continued.

The complaint is the first step in the procedure, which can be quite lengthy.

The EU has asked for consultations with the US and Canada. If no progress is made within 60 days, the case goes to a WTO panel, where the procedure lasts another eight to nine months.

"Obviously we could save a lot of time and effort if the US and Canada just lifted the sanctions", said Mr Lamy's spokeswomen.

Although over half of disputes are settled at the consultation phase, without going to the panel, the spokeswoman said it was "very difficult to say" what would happen in this case. The EU expects a response in the coming days, she added.

"The message we are sending is loud and clear ... the sanctions must go", she told reporters.

The EU's announcement follows recent transatlantic squabbles over government aid to aerospace companies Boeing and Airbus.

EU ready to challenge US border tax

The EU is willing to fight any attempt by the Trump administration to impose border tax on imports, says trade commissioner Jyrki Katainen.

US picks new fight with Merkel

The new US administration has once again antagonised Germany, this time by accusing it of currency manipulation.

Visual Data

EU farming policy: The damage done by 20 years of inertia

The EU Commission will ask the public later this week how the common agricultural policy should be overhauled. Data from the past two decades reveals a catalogue of missed chances and failed reforms.

Opinion

Unfair EU-Canada trade deal is wrong response to Trump

The EU-Canada trade deal, which is to be voted on in the European Parliament next week, cements the inequalities, political exclusion and favours to corporations that feed far-right groups in Europe.

Visual Data

EU farming policy: The damage done by 20 years of inertia

The EU Commission will ask the public later this week how the common agricultural policy should be overhauled. Data from the past two decades reveals a catalogue of missed chances and failed reforms.

News in Brief

  1. Migrants storm Spanish enclave of Ceuta
  2. Spain's princess fined for tax fraud, husband sentenced
  3. EU to invest millions in energy infrastructure
  4. Dutch data watchdog forces online vote aides to up security
  5. EU allows Lithuania to ban Russian tv channel
  6. Finland announces increase in defence spending
  7. Ex-PM Blair says Brits should 'rise up' against Brexit
  8. Nato chief says facts to prevail over fake news

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Malta EU 2017End of Roaming Fees: Council Reaches Agreement on Wholesale Caps
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Innovation House Opens in New York to Help Startups Access US Market
  3. Centre Maurits CoppietersMinorities and Migrations
  4. Salzburg Global SeminarThe Child in the City: Health, Parks and Play
  5. UNICEFNumber of Ukrainian Children Needing Aid Nearly Doubles to 1 Million Over the Past Year
  6. Centre Maurits CoppietersThe Situation of Refugee Women in Europe
  7. Salzburg Global SeminarToward a Shared Culture of Health: Charting the Patient-Clinician Relationship
  8. European Free AllianceAustria Should Preserve & Promote Bilingual and Multinational Carinthia
  9. Martens CentreShow Your Love for Democracy! Take Part in Our Contest: "If It's Broken, Let's Fix It"
  10. CISPECloud Computing Leaders Establish Data Protection Standards to Protect Customer Data
  11. Malta EU 2017Landmark Deal Reached With European Parliament on Portability of Online Content
  12. Belgrade Security ForumBSF 2017: Building a Common Future in the Age of Uncertainty