United States — Measures Affecting the Importation of Animals, Meat and Other Animal Products from Argentina

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Complaint by Argentina.

On 30 August 2012, Argentina requested consultations with the United States concerning certain measures affecting the importation of animals, meat and other animal products from Argentina.

The specific measures challenged by Argentina are:

(i) the import prohibition of fresh (chilled or frozen) beef from Argentina embodied in the interim and final rule of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), which amend the regulations of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR);

(ii) the failure to recognize certain areas of Argentina's territory as free of foot-and-mouth disease embodied in the APHIS Policy Regarding Importation of Animals and Animal Products; and

(iii) alleged undue delays in recognizing the animal health status of a region or in granting approval to export animals or animal products from that region with both types of delay occurring under procedures embodied in the US Code of Federal Regulations (CFR); and additional conditions on importation allegedly imposed by  Section 737 of the Omnibus Act 2009.

Argentina claims that the challenged measures appear to be inconsistent with:

  • Articles I:1, III:4 and XI:1 of the GATT 1994;
  • Articles 1.1, 2.2, 2.3, 3.1, 3.3, 5.1, 5.2, 5.4, 5.6, 6.1, 6.2, 8 and Annex C.1, and Article 10.1 of the SPS Agreement; and
  • Article XVI:4 of the WTO Agreement.

On 6 December 2012, Argentina requested the establishment of a panel.  At its meeting on 17 December 2012, the DSB deferred the establishment of a panel.


Panel and Appellate Body proceedings

At its meeting on 28 January 2013, the DSB established a panel.  Australia, China, the European Union, India and Korea reserved their third party rights. On 29 July 2013, Argentina requested the Director-General to compose the panel. On 8 August 2013, the Director-General composed the panel. On 7 March 2014, the Chair of the panel informed the DSB that, taking into account the scale and complexity of the dispute, the panel expects to issue its final report to the parties in early 2015.

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