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Argentina will appeal WTO ruling against the use of import restrictions

Tuesday, August 26th 2014 - 06:35 UTC
Full article 13 comments
 Deputy minister Emmanuel Alvarez confirmed the dispute with WTO but said that “Argentine customs are not closed, but looked after”. Deputy minister Emmanuel Alvarez confirmed the dispute with WTO but said that “Argentine customs are not closed, but looked after”.

Argentina will appeal a World Trade Organization ruling against its use of import restrictions, according to a senior Argentine official. On Friday a WTO dispute panel found against Argentina in a 2012 case brought by the United States, the European Union and Japan relating to Buenos Aires licensing rules used to restrict imports.

 The panel said the rules violated WTO agreements, and urged the government of President Cristina Fernandez to bring them in line with international trade regulations.

EU Trade Commissioner, Karel De Gucht, had welcomed the ruling that certain conditions which Argentina introduced for firms wishing to import goods into the country break WTO law.

De Gucht said, “This case sends an important signal that protectionism is not acceptable. I call on Argentina to move quickly to comply with the ruling of the WTO panel and remove these illegal measures, and open the way for EU goods to compete fairly on the Argentine market.”

The country would appeal the ruling, confirmed deputy economy minister Emmanuel Alvarez in comments on the radio: “Argentine customs are not closed, but looked after”.

The United States, EU and Japan had argued that Argentina did not automatically grant licenses to importers as required by WTO rules, allowing it to shield its vulnerable economy.

However, Alvarez Agis forecasted that the WTO ruling will not have an immediate impact on Argentine exports. “They are not really sanctions, they are demands for some adjustments, corrections. This does not mean we are going to have customs wide open and be exposed to a flood of imports”.

He added that there were over 40 measures formulated but only three were received, “and precisely from the three countries which have received most reports; the US currently faces 121 demands and the EU, 79. Even Argentina has posted demands against the US and the EU, such is the case of beef and citrus and bio-diesel in the second case”.

Argentina's economy entered into recession in the first quarter of 2014 and its exports are under pressure, while central bank reserves have been strained by a lack of access to international bond financing.

Top Comments

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  • Biguggy

    Argentina not wanting to 'play by the rules' - Again. What a surprize!

    Aug 26th, 2014 - 07:50 am 0
  • Conqueror

    Should we wonder at the intelligence of the argie “government”?

    “requirements that all imports are balanced by exports and accompanied by investments into the country. Argentina imposed limits on the volume and price of imports and bans on foreign companies repatriating funds to their home countries as well”.

    Should we “interpret” that? If you want to import goods into argieland, you have to find something to export as well. And the supplier has to “invest” in argieland as well. Sounds a bit like robbery to me. Especially if the “government” then decides to “expropriate” stuff. And what's this? Can't take the profit out of the country? How did they think other countries were going to stand for that? It would be like going into a casino and risking your money only to be told, after you've won, that you can't take your winnings with you!

    Aug 26th, 2014 - 09:03 am 0
  • yankeeboy

    The Argentinians always have the consequences backwards, it must be because they live in Bizzaro world, anyhoo, its not the imports flooding into the country they should be worried about its the exports being outright blocked or huge taxes put on them by the countries that won the ruling.
    They think the wine business was bad this year, they ain't see nothin' yet.
    Silly fools always think they can get away with everything forever.

    Aug 26th, 2014 - 10:02 am 0
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