Canada imposes 100% tariffs on EU agricultural products

OTTAWA (Aug. 3, 1999) — In a retaliatory move, Canada has imposed 100% tariffs on beef, pork, cucumbers, and gherkins imported from the European Union beginning Aug. 1.

This action is in response to the EU’s failure to implement trade rulings made by the World Trade Organization (WTO) on Canadian beef produced using growth hormones, said International Trade Minister Sergio Marchi and Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Lyle Vanclief.

Goods that are in transit to Canada on or before Aug. 1, 1999, are excluded from these measures.

Following a series of unsuccessful consultations and negotiations with the EU for compensation, a WTO arbitration report was issued on July 12, 1998. The report established $11.3 million as the value of trade damages suffered by Canada as a result of the EU ban on Canadian beef.

“Canada has consulted closely with the cattle industry throughout this 10-year dispute, and we will continue working together until there is a satisfactory resolution,” said Vanclief. “Our goal is to regain access to the EU market, not retaliate. But since the EU has neither opened its market, nor offered acceptable interim compensation, we have no choice but to retaliate.”

The retaliation on beef will prevent all EU beef from entering Canada. Last April, the Canadian government engaged in broad consultations on a proposed list of products that could be subject to retaliation. The retaliation list announced July 29 is the result of that consultation.

In accordance with WTO rules, the retaliatory duties imposed by Canada will remain in effect until the EU complies with its WTO obligations.

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