The Chair of the Committee, Ms Kerrlene Wills of Guyana, said in spite of reminders to members to submit their notifications in time, 89 members — more than half the WTO membership — have still not submitted their 2021 subsidy notifications by the mid-2021 deadline.  In addition, 76 members still have not submitted their 2019 subsidy notifications, while 65 have still failed to submit their 2017 notifications.

The Chair strongly urged all WTO members to submit their notifications as soon as possible and use the technical assistance available through the WTO Secretariat if help is needed in filing the notifications. Ultimately, the Chair said, all WTO members — in addition to being required to notify — have an interest in the notified information of other members, which only becomes available through the collective effort of all.

Seven delegations took the floor to urge members to step up their efforts and ensure both timely submission of notifications as well as complete notifications including all covered subsidy programmes.

The Committee continued to discuss the revised proposal submitted by the United States for ensuring timely responses to questions posed by members under Articles 25.8 and 25.9 of the Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (SCM) Agreement.

Review of subsidy notifications from members

The Committee reviewed new and full subsidy notifications for 2021 submitted by Albania, Argentina, Cuba, the European Union (pertaining to Austria, Germany, Luxembourg and Slovenia), India, Mexico, Moldova, Saudi Arabia, Switzerland and Türkiye.

The Committee continued its review of 2021 subsidy notifications from Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, the European Union (also pertaining to Bulgaria, Cyprus, Denmark, Greece, Hungary, Ireland and Spain), Hong Kong China, Israel, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Montenegro, New Zealand, Philippines, United Kingdom and United States.

The Committee also continued its review of 2019 notifications from China, the Dominican Republic, the European Union (Portugal), Indonesia and Russia as well as a 2015 notification from China.

The Committee continued discussions on a proposal from Australia, Canada, the European Union, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States to amend procedures for the review of new and full subsidy notifications.

National legislation

The Committee reviewed new notifications of countervailing duty legislation submitted by Brazil, Canada, Colombia and the United Kingdom and continued its review of the legislative notification from Saint Kitts and Nevis, Cameroon, the European Union and Ghana.

Semi-annual reports of members on countervailing duty actions

The Committee went over the semi-annual reports of countervailing duty actions submitted by Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, the European Union, India, Türkiye, the United Kingdom, the United States and Viet Nam.

In addition to the semi-annual reports, the SCM Agreement requires members to submit notifications without delay of all preliminary and final countervailing duty actions taken. Reports received from Australia, Brazil, Canada, the European Union, India, Mexico, Türkiye, the United Kingdom and the United States were reviewed by members.

Other matters

China placed a separate item on the agenda regarding alleged subsidies policies and measures adopted by the United States. China's intervention focused on its recent questions submitted under Article 25.8 of the SCM Agreement regarding the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 (IRA) and the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022, both of which, according to China, contain provisions inconsistent with some of the core WTO principles.

Noting that it would submit its written responses to China's questions, the United States said its legislation was in line with WTO commitments and urged China to be as transparent with its support programmes as the United States has been with its programmes.

Australia, Canada, the European Union, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States once again placed a separate item on the agenda regarding subsidies and overcapacity. Co-sponsors referred to the recent joint report by the WTO, IMF, OECD and World Bank indicating that trade distortions being caused by industrial subsidization create overcapacity in certain sectors. China along with Russia reiterated that overcapacity was a problem with multiple causes other than subsidies.

Australia, Canada, the European Union, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States also placed again a separate item on the agenda regarding China’s publication and inquiry point obligations under China's Protocol of WTO Accession. Co-sponsors expressed their concerns with respect to China's commitment to publish all trade-related measures in a single journal and to provide, upon request of WTO members, all information relating to the measures required to be published.

In response, China reiterated that members could contact the inquiry point and it would fulfil its transparency commitments as long as the requested information was within the scope of its publication and inquiry point obligations.   

Under other business, Indonesia raised concerns regarding a countervailing duty investigation launched by India on imports of saturated fatty alcohol from Indonesia.

Next meeting

The next meeting of the SCM Committee is scheduled to take place the week of 1 May 2023.

More information about the SCM Agreement and the WTO's work on subsidies and countervailing measures can be found here.





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