Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education



Front Page

World

UK

UK Politics

Business

Sci/Tech

Health

Education

Sport

Entertainment

Talking Point

In Depth

On Air

Archive
Feedback
Low Graphics
Help

Friday, April 30, 1999 Published at 19:36 GMT 20:36 UK


Business: The Economy

US on trade warpath

The EU is accused of unfairly subsidising Airbus development

The United States has gone on the trade warpath, filing seven complaints with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) - against India, Canada, Argentina and two each against the European Union and South Korea.

The cases were announced in the annual report by the US Trade Representative, Charlene Barshefsky, to Congress.


[ image: Charlene Barshefsky, the woman in charge of US trade policy]
Charlene Barshefsky, the woman in charge of US trade policy
The seven complaints are over manufacturing, agriculture, intellectual property rights and government procurement.

Mrs Barshefsky said: "These actions underscore the administration's commitment to ensuring full compliance with existing WTO obligations."

She said that action against foreign government practices conflicting with existing international obligations would enable "the United States to open markets to US exports" and "identify US priorities for our future trade negotiations".

The seven cases are:

  • Against the European Union in a dispute in which the United States is objecting to subsidies granted to France for a new flight management system adapted to Airbus aircraft.
  • A second case against the EU in which the US is alleging unfair treatment for American farm products because of registration requirements.
  • A charge that India is imposing unfair requirements on American automakers seeking to set up operations there.
  • A complaint that South Korea is unfairly restricting the ability of American construction companies to bid on airport work.
  • Another charge against South Korea that the country imposes unfair import restrictions against American beef.
  • A case against Canada, saying it is unfairly restricting the length of time American products can receive patent protection.
  • A complaint that Argentina is failing to provide proper patent protection for American products.
Mrs Barshefsky said the United States would ask for dispute settlement procedures to be activated.

The report also said it would start an investigation into Canadian tourism practices, which allegedly hurts US hotel and other businesses on the border with its northern neighbour.

The actions are taken under US laws, identifying trade practices by other countries that allegedly harm US commerce.

In the past, the annual report was used to launch trade proceedings that often led to unilateral sanctions against Japan and other trade partners.

In recent years it has been used to identify cases the Washington government wants to bring before the WTO.

The US government is already involved in a number of trade disputes, over banana imports into the European Union, beef exports to the EU and so-called 'hush kits' to muffle noise from older aircraft.



Advanced options | Search tips




Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©


The Economy Contents


Relevant Stories

19 Apr 99 | The Economy
WTO approves banana sanctions

25 Apr 99 | The Economy
New Atlantic trade war looms

29 Apr 99 | The Economy
Thaw in EU-US trade tensions

29 Apr 99 | The Economy
EU bans US beef





Internet Links


World Trade Organisation

US Trade Representative

US press release on trade complaints


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.




In this section

Inquiry into energy provider loyalty

Brown considers IMF job

Chinese imports boost US trade gap

No longer Liffe as we know it

The growing threat of internet fraud

House passes US budget

Online share dealing triples

Rate fears as sales soar

Brown's bulging war-chest

Oil reaches nine-year high

UK unemployment falls again

Trade talks deadlocked

US inflation still subdued

Insolvent firms to get breathing space

Bank considered bigger rate rise

UK pay rising 'too fast'

Utilities face tough regulation

CBI's new chief named

US stocks hit highs after rate rise

US Fed raises rates

UK inflation creeps up

Row over the national shopping basket

Military airspace to be cut

TUC warns against following US

World growth accelerates

Union merger put in doubt

Japan's tentative economic recovery

EU fraud costs millions

CBI choice 'could wreck industrial relations'

WTO hails China deal

US business eyes Chinese market

Red tape task force

Websites and widgets

Guru predicts web surge

Malaysia's economy: The Sinatra Principle

Shell secures Iranian oil deal

Irish boom draws the Welsh

China deal to boost economy

US dream scenario continues

Japan's billion dollar spending spree