Statements by the United States at the DSB Meeting

Geneva,
November 19, 2009

1. SURVEILLANCE OF IMPLEMENTATION OF RECOMMENDATIONS ADOPTED BY THE DSB

A. UNITED STATES – SECTION 211 OMNIBUS APPROPRIATIONS ACT OF 1998: STATUS REPORT BY THE UNITED STATES (WT/DS176/11/ADD.84)

• Mr. Chairman, the United States provided a status report in this dispute on November 6, 2009, in accordance with Article 21.6 of the DSU.

• As noted in that status report, a number of legislative proposals that would implement the DSB’s recommendations and rulings in this dispute have been introduced in the current Congress.

• The U.S. Administration is working with Congress to implement the DSB’s recommendations and rulings.

[Second intervention:]

• In response to the comments about systemic concerns about the dispute settlement system, as we have stated in the past, the facts simply do not support Members’ assertions or justify such systemic concerns. The record is clear: the United States has come into compliance, fully and promptly, in the vast majority of its disputes.

• And as for the remaining few instances where our efforts to do so have not yet been entirely successful, the United States has been working actively towards compliance in furtherance of the purpose of the dispute settlement mechanism, to secure a positive solution to the dispute.

B. UNITED STATES – ANTI DUMPING MEASURES ON CERTAIN HOT ROLLED STEEL PRODUCTS FROM JAPAN: STATUS REPORT BY THE UNITED STATES (WT/DS184/15/ADD.84)

• The United States provided a status report in this dispute on November 6, 2009, in accordance with Article 21.6 of the DSU.
• As of November 23, 2002, the U.S. authorities had addressed the DSB’s recommendations and rulings with respect to the calculation of antidumping margins in the hot-rolled steel antidumping duty investigation at issue in this dispute. Details are provided in the document numbered WT/DS184/15/ADD.3.
• With respect to the recommendations and rulings of the DSB that were not already addressed by the U.S. authorities by November 23, 2002, the U.S. Administration will work with the U.S. Congress with respect to appropriate statutory measures that would resolve this matter.
C. UNITED STATES – SECTION 110(5) OF THE US COPYRIGHT ACT: STATUS REPORT BY THE UNITED STATES (WT/DS160/24/ADD.59)

• The United States provided a status report in this dispute on November 6, 2009, in accordance with Article 21.6 of the DSU.
• The U.S. Administration will continue to confer with the European Communities, and to work closely with the U.S. Congress, in order to reach a mutually satisfactory resolution of this matter.
D. EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES – MEASURES AFFECTING THE APPROVAL AND MARKETING OF BIOTECH PRODUCTS: STATUS REPORT BY THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES (WT/DS291/37/ADD.22 WT/DS293/31/ADD.22)
• The United States thanks the EC for its status report and for its statement today.

• The United States recalls its concerns about the large number of biotech products backed up in the EC approval system. Approximately 60 biotech products are awaiting approval, which is more than double the number at the time this dispute was initiated in 2003. The EC’s failure to move forward in a timely manner on these applications for approval results in an effective import ban on important U.S. agricultural products.

• After months of inaction, in the last few days the EC has finally approved three varieties of biotech maize, and the EC has allowed a fourth variety to move forward in the approval process. Unfortunately, even if these four maize varieties were approved, they would represent only a small fraction of the total backlog of pending applications. Thus, approvals of these varieties would not result in a resumption of trade in important biotech products.

• Moreover, the EC’s selection of these particular products for action serves to highlight the concerns of the United States with the EC’s operation of its approval system.

• Although the EC has allowed these four applications to move forward in its approval system, a dozen other applications at the same stage of the EC’s process remain stalled. The only apparent reason for the EC’s selection of these products for action – as opposed to the other many pending applications – was that a failure by the EC to act would have resulted in increased EC feed prices, and thus would have harmed EC economic interests.

• The United States would recall that the obligation of Members is to consider applications for approval without undue delay. A Member is not entitled to delay action until it is imperative for its own economic interests to allow an approval.

• Accordingly, the United States urges the EC to address promptly the problems with its approval system, and we thank the DSB for its attention to this matter.

E. EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES – REGIME FOR THE IMPORTATION, SALE AND DISTRIBUTION OF BANANAS: SECOND RECOURSE TO ARTICLE 21.5 OF THE DSU BY ECUADOR: STATUS REPORT BY THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES (WT/DS27/96/ADD.10)
• Mr. Chairman, we thank the EC for its status report and statement.
• The reasonable period of time for compliance in this dispute expired more than 10 years ago, on January 1, 1999.

• We take note of the EC’s efforts to reach agreement with interested parties to resolve the dispute. We also note that the commercial impact of the EC’s non-compliance over this very long period is undeniably large and damaging to a number of WTO Members.

• We therefore call on the EC to resolve this dispute, and until then, we renew our request to the EC to provide a status report with respect to the disputes brought by the U.S. and other complaining parties.

F. UNITED STATES – LAWS, REGULATIONS AND METHODOLOGY FOR CALCULATING DUMPING MARGINS (“ZEROING”): STATUS REPORT BY THE UNITED STATES (WT/DS294/34/ADD.3)

• Mr. Chairman, the United States provided a status report in this dispute on November 6, 2009, in accordance with Article 21.6 of the DSU.

• As noted in that status report, the United States has already taken a number of steps to implement the DSB’s recommendations and rulings in this dispute. With regard to the remaining issues, the United States will continue to consult with interested parties.

[Second intervention:]

• As we stated previously, the United States is consulting with interested parties in order to address the findings in this dispute.
• Furthermore, the United States recognizes the difficulties raised by the Appellate Body findings on zeroing and is consulting within the government and with interested stakeholders to find an appropriate solution.

• With respect to the recommendations and rulings of the DSB in other disputes, the United States has in each case expressed its intent to comply with its obligations under the WTO Agreement. We will address the recommendations and rulings in those disputes in the DSB at the appropriate time.

G. UNITED STATES – MEASURES RELATING TO ZEROING AND SUNSET REVIEWS: STATUS REPORT BY THE UNITED STATES (WT/DS322/36/ADD.2)
• Mr. Chairman, the United States provided a status report in this dispute on November 6, 2009, in accordance with Article 21.6 of the DSU.

• As noted in that status report, the United States has taken steps to implement the DSB’s recommendations and rulings in this dispute. With respect to the outstanding issues, the United States will continue to consult with interested parties in order to address those issues.
2. UNITED STATES – CONTINUED DUMPING AND SUBSIDY OFFSET ACT OF 2000: IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATIONS ADOPTED BY THE DSB

A. STATEMENTS BY THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES AND JAPAN

• As the United States has already explained at numerous previous DSB meetings, the President signed the Deficit Reduction Act into law on February 8, 2006. That Act includes a provision repealing the Continued Dumping and Subsidy Offset Act of 2000. Thus, the United States has taken all actions necessary to implement the DSB’s recommendations and rulings in these disputes.

• We recall, furthermore, that Members, including the EC and Japan, have acknowledged during previous DSB meetings that the 2006 Deficit Reduction Act does not permit the distribution of duties collected on goods entered after October 1, 2007.

• We therefore do not understand the purpose for which the EC and Japan have inscribed this item today.

• And with respect to comments regarding further status reports in this matter, as we have already explained at previous DSB meetings, the United States fails to see what purpose would be served by further submission of status reports repeating the progress the United States made in the implementation of the DSB’s recommendations and rulings.

3. UNITED STATES – CERTAIN COUNTRY OF ORIGIN LABELLING (COOL) REQUIREMENTS

A. REQUEST FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A PANEL BY CANADA (WT/DS384/8)

4. UNITED STATES – CERTAIN COUNTRY OF ORIGIN LABELLING REQUIREMENTS

A. REQUEST FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A PANEL BY MEXICO (WT/DS386/7 AND CORR.1)

• Mr. Chairman, the United States is disappointed that Canada and Mexico have chosen to pursue their requests for a panel in this matter.

• We understand that a panel will be established today. Nonetheless, we are confident that our measures provide information to consumers in a manner consistent with our WTO commitments.

• As we noted at last month’s DSB meeting, WTO Members have long recognized that country of origin labeling is a legitimate policy. Indeed, that recognition predates the entry into force of the WTO Agreement. It is common for WTO Members to require that goods be labeled as to their origin, and we are confident that a panel will agree with us.

• With respect to the requests for a single panel, we can agree that a single panel should be established to consider both complaints.

• We would also like to take this opportunity to thank Canada and Mexico for their cooperation on a procedural issue, namely, and without prejudice to any systemic views, that the two complaining parties and the United States have agreed that we will jointly request the panel that will be established at the present meeting, to open its meetings to the public. We look forward to continuing that procedural cooperation with the complaining parties throughout this dispute.

5. EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES – CERTAIN MEASURES AFFECTING POULTRY MEAT AND POULTRY MEAT PRODUCTS FROM THE UNITED STATES

A. REQUEST FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A PANEL BY THE UNITED STATES (WT/DS389/4)

• As the United States explained at the DSB meeting on October 23rd, the United States is concerned with restrictions that the EC imposes on the import and marketing of poultry meat and poultry meat products from the United States.

• In 2002, the United States requested the European Commission to approve four pathogen reduction treatments (PRTs) for use in the production of poultry intended for export to the EC. After a delay of over six years, however, the EC has failed to approve any of the four PRTs, notwithstanding the fact that the EC’s own scientists have found that the importation and consumption of poultry processed with those four PRTs does not pose a risk to human health. Instead, the EC has rejected the requests for approval of those PRTs.

• At last month’s DSB meeting, the EC mentioned the dialogue between the United States and the European Communities on this issue. We, too, regret that significant U.S. engagement over many years has not resulted in the lifting of the EC’s ban on the import and marketing of U.S. poultry.

• As outlined in our panel request, the United States considers that the EC’s ban on the import and marketing of U.S. poultry treated with these PRTs is inconsistent with several provisions of the SPS Agreement, the Agriculture Agreement, the GATT 1994, and the TBT Agreement.

• Accordingly, the United States again requests that the DSB establish a panel to examine this matter, with standard terms of reference.

6. CHINA – MEASURES RELATED TO THE EXPORTATION OF VARIOUS RAW MATERIALS

A. REQUEST FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A PANEL BY THE UNITED STATES (WT/DS394/7)

B. REQUEST FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A PANEL BY THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES (WT/DS395/7)

C. REQUEST FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A PANEL BY MEXICO (WT/DS398/6)

• The United States is concerned about Chinese measures that restrain the exportation of certain raw materials that are critical to U.S. manufacturing industries. These restraints not only limit the availability of these raw materials, but also increase the cost of these raw materials to U.S. and other producers outside of China, while providing an artificial cost advantage to downstream industries within China.

• The materials at issue are either raw or initially processed materials that are essential inputs in the production of steel, aluminum, and industrial chemicals with far-ranging applications.

• The export restraints at issue include export quotas, export duties, minimum export pricing, various restrictions on the right to export, as well as administrative requirements that increase the burdens and costs for exporting these materials from China.

• As described in more detail in the U.S. panel request, these restraints appear to be inconsistent with provisions of the GATT 1994 and China’s Protocol of Accession.

• Accordingly, the United States requests that the DSB establish a panel to examine the matter set out in our panel request with standard terms of reference.

7. UNITED STATES – SUBSIDIES ON UPLAND COTTON

A. RECOURSE TO ARTICLE 4.10 OF THE SCM AGREEMENT AND ARTICLE 22.7 OF THE DSU BY BRAZIL (WT/DS267/41)

B. RECOURSE TO ARTICLE 7.9 OF THE SCM AGREEMENT AND ARTICLE 22.7 OF THE DSU BY BRAZIL (WT/DS267/42

• Mr. Chairman, the United States wishes to reiterate at the outset that it intends to comply with the DSB’s recommendations and rulings in this dispute. Thus, while the United States understands that the DSB will today be authorizing the suspension of concessions or other obligations, we do not believe that it will be necessary for Brazil to exercise that authorization.

• We would also like to reiterate our appreciation to the Arbitrators, and the thoughtful and methodical manner in which they approached their task in a number of respects. As we explained on September 25th, the Arbitrators reached several important conclusions, including that appropriate countermeasures under the SCM Agreement shall be limited to trade effects on Brazil, agreeing with the position of the United States as well as that advanced by Members in other arbitrations. For further details, we would refer Members to the U.S. statement made at the September DSB meeting.

• Mr. Chairman, suspending concessions or obligations could present economic and other challenges for both Brazil and the United States.

• Last week, Brazil published a list of goods for possible increased tariffs as part of countermeasures. This list includes a wide range of goods that are important for both our economies.

• In fact, the range of goods demonstrates the extensive and positive trade relationship that we have developed. We value our economic relationship and hope to build on it and not have this dispute detract from that effort.

• The United States would welcome Brazil’s ideas on identifying a solution to these issues.

• We look forward to continuing our discussions with Brazil on the issues related to this dispute.

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