Original Press Release
NAM Supports WTO Case Against Unjustified EU Ban On U.S.Poultry
Press release date: January 16, 2009
EU Insistence on Non-scientific Regulation Left U.S. No Other Option
WASHINGTON, D.C., January 16, 2009 - The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) endorsed the decision announced today by U.S. Trade Representative Susan Schwab to request formal World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute settlement consultations with the European Union (EU) regarding the EU's ban on the import and marketing of poultry meat and poultry meat products from the United States.
"The EU's ban has no scientific basis," said Shaun Donnelly, NAM's Senior Director for International Business Policy. "U.S. poultry has been thoroughly tested and judged to be safe for consumers and for the environment by both U.S. and European food safety authorities.
"Launching a WTO dispute settlement is never the NAM's a preferred option to resolve market barriers, but the EU has left the U.S. no choice," Donnelly said. "In recent months it has shown absolutely no willingness to engage seriously with the U.S., the industry or other parties to find a solution to this decade-long trade dispute.
"Getting this unjustified ban lifted is very important to NAM member companies and workers in the poultry industry as well as the many suppliers and service providers to that sector here in the U.S," Donnelly said. "But the implications and importance of this case go far beyond poultry. The EU has shown an unfortunate tendency to employ non-scientific factors in the regulatory process. Disregard of sound science by the EU is a serious threat to U.S. industry and other trading partners of the EU in many other sectors."
The NAM has pushed aggressively for resolution of the non-tariff barrier for poultry. In mid-December, when the EU again blocked any progress on the poultry issue at the most recent meeting of the U.S.-EU cabinet-level Transatlantic Economic Council, the NAM publicly urged Washington to explore all its options and to respond appropriately. "We are pleased that our government has come up with the most appropriate action to protect the interests of the U.S. poultry industry and many other sectors threatened by the EU's non-scientific regulatory approach," Donnelly said.
The National Association of Manufacturers is the nation's largest industrial trade association, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the NAM has 11 additional offices across the country. Visit the NAM's award-winning web site at www.nam.org for more information about manufacturing and the economy.