WTO: 2005 NEWS ITEMS
Dispute Settlement Body 31 August 2005
Telecom, wheat and apple disputes settled
At the Dispute Settlement Body meeting on 31 August 2005, Mexico and Canada presented final status reports on progress in the implementation of DSB’s recommendations in the telecom and wheat cases, respectively, while Japan reported it had reached a mutually agreed solution with the United States in the apple case.
This summary has been prepared by the WTO Secretariat’s Information and Media Relations Division to help public understanding about developments in WTO disputes. It is not a legal interpretation of the issues, and it is not intended as a complete account of the issues. These can be found in the reports themselves and in the minutes of the Dispute Settlement Body’s meetings.
Implementation of the recommendations of the DSB
At the Dispute Settlement Body meeting on 31 August 2005, Mexico and Canada presented final status reports on progress in the implementation of DSB’s recommendations in the cases “Mexico — Measures Affecting Telecommunications Services” and “Canada — Measures Relating to Exports of Wheat and Treatment of Imported Grain”, respectively, while Japan reported it had reached a mutually agreed solution with the United States in the case “Japan — Measures Affecting the Importation of Apples”.
Mexico reported that the Regulation on marketing of long distance and international long distance telecommunications services was published in the official journal on 12 August 2005. It said that with the issuing of this Regulation, Mexico has fully complied with the terms of the agreement with the United States in respect of the recommendations of the panel. The United States said that it was satisfied that Mexico had fulfilled the regulatory changes required by their agreement.
Canada said that amendments to the Canada Transportation Act and the Canada Grain Act came into force on 1 August 2005, thus bringing it into compliance with the DSB’s recommendations and rulings. The United States said it appreciated Canada’s report, and that it was reviewing Canada’s responses to questions it had posed on the new regulations.
The United States reported that the Administration was working with the US Congress to implement DSB’s rulings and recommendations in the following cases: “US — Section 211 Omnibus Appropriations Act of 1998”; “US — Anti-Dumping Measures on Certain Hot-Rolled Steel Products from Japan”; “US — Continued Dumping and Subsidy Offset Act of 2000”; and “US — Section 110(5) of the US Copyright Act”.
The European Communities informed the DSB that its intention was to fully implement the DSB’s recommendations in the case: “EC — Countervailing Measures on Dynamic Random Access Memory Chips from Korea”. Korea said it was willing to discuss any EC proposal regarding a reasonable period of time for implementation in this case.
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Request for initiation of procedures under Annex V of the Subsidies Agreement
The United States renewed its request for initiation of procedures in Annex V of the Subsidies Agreement (for obtaining information on the existence and amount of subsidization), which it said the EC had blocked when the DSB established a panel on 20 July 2005 in the case “European Communities and Certain Member States — Measures Affecting Trade in Large Civil Aircraft”, and again during the DSB meeting on 3 August 2005. The EC said that it was not opposed to the initiation of the procedure as such but believed on the need to ensure that any agreement on this manner is carefully crafted so as to take the particularities of the dispute properly into account. It said that discussions with the United States have narrowed their differences, which should enable the two parties to jointly request the commencement of the procedures very soon. The US expressed disappointment that the EC had blocked its request for a third time.
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Under “Other Business”, Japan informed the DSB that it had reached a mutually agreed solution with the United States in relation to the case “Japan — Measures Affecting the Importation of Apples”. The US expressed appreciation for the further changes made by Japan in its measures, adding it would be monitoring implementation. Guatemala informed the DSB of the withdrawal of its request for consultations pertaining to the case: “Mexico — Certain Pricing Measures for Customs Valuation and Other Purposes”. Mexico said the resolution of this case showed the benefits of consultations.
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The DSB will hold a special meeting on 6 September 2005. Its next regular meeting is scheduled for 27 September 2005.