Wednesday, January 16, 2013

It is Argentina's turn now

Argentina had requested for consultations with the EU and US in 3 cases regarding importation of lemons, beef and biodiesel. I have blogged about the rising tensions between Argentina and its trading partners here. Now it seems that the consultations have not borne fruit and reports of Argentina deciding to file a WTO complaint in this regard. The three disputes where the request for consultation were made are DS 443DS 447 and DS 448. News reports of Argentina going ahead with the complaints are found here and here.

Argentina has been criticized for putting up protectionist measures about which I have blogged here.Panama recently filed a dispute (DS 453/1) against Argentina at the dispute settlement  body. These cases seem to be in retaliation to those allegations.I have done a detailed piece about the possible WTO violations in the case of biodiesel here.

We again see the WTO dispute settlement mechanism playing out as a forum for resolution of disputes without being seen as causing a "trade war" or "imbroglio". Argentina has been active in the WTO dispute settlement process being a complainant in 20 cases beginning in 1996. 

Things are heating up at the dispute settlement forum with more countries seeking trade remedies and taking on their trading partners. News of EU contemplating a WTO complaint against the new member Russia is the topic of my next post. Good news for a rule based resolution of disputes?

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