Opportunity Still Exists for Washington to Avoid Canadian Trade Retaliation

CANADA - The Canadian Pork Council says Washington still has the ability to avoid the imposition of retaliatory tariffs on US products sold into Canada and Mexico by dissolving Mandatory US Country of Origin Legislation, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 23 September 2015
clock icon 3 minute read

Last week, following a series of World Trade Organization rulings declaring Mandatory Country of Origin Labelling contrary to US international trade obligations, representatives of Canada and Mexico appeared before a WTO arbitration panel in Geneva to request authority to impose over $3,000,000,000 in annual retaliatory tariffs on a range of products imported from the US.

Canadian Pork Council chair Rick Bergmann says the U.S. labelling law has taken a dramatic toll on Canadian and Mexican livestock producers.

Rick Bergmann-Canadian Pork Council:

The US for the 4th time has been found non-compliant to World Trade Organization rules so we're very focused on seeing this to an end and we will continue to go down the retaliation path and the only way that that will not occur is if the US does come into compliance.

In Washington, they have the opportunity and the ability to dissolve this poor law of Country of Origin Labelling that they've created so they need to understand the ramifications if they don't do that.

But our focus right now is on retaliation and we know, based on the WTO, that we're in the right so we have to defend our producers because they have lost an awful lot over the last 7 years.

The WTO arbitration panel is now reviewing the request and is expected to rule by November 27.
Bergmann says if action is taken quickly retaliation will be avoided but, if their feet continue to drag, there will be retaliation coming forward.

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