NCC Believes Brazil WTO Case ResolvedThu, 20 Feb 2014 10:54:01 CST
In response to Brazil's decision to request a panel at the World Trade Organization (WTO) to assess the new U.S. farm bill, the National Cotton Council stated that the new Stacked Income Protection Plan was developed specifically to bring the United States into compliance with the 2008 WTO Appellate Body decision thus resolving the long-standing dispute.
NCC Chairman Wally Darneille said, "The farm bill makes several changes to cotton policy and the GSM 102 export credit program. These changes are significant, and we believe the matter is resolved. We are encouraged by statements by Brazilian officials which indicate a preference to resolve the case through continued discussions rather than retaliation. We encourage U.S. officials to continue to engage with their Brazilian counterparts to reach a resolution to the case."
Brazil's latest action follows its government's December threat to resurrect retaliation against U.S. exports in spite of consistent and extensive efforts by the U.S. industry to resolve the longstanding trade dispute.
The NCC responded then that the U.S. cotton industry had consistently demonstrated good faith efforts to resolve this case, including outreach to Brazilian growers. The NCC undertook unprecedented steps to urge Congress to terminate a program provision in 2006 and, subsequently in 2011, to support comprehensive reform of cotton policy as part of new farm law. The NCC noted then that when compared to current programs, cotton will be the only program crop in the new farm bill to either eliminate or reduce the price-triggered support levels. Further, as part of a Framework Agreement, the U.S. government has transferred nearly $500 million to the Brazil Cotton Institute for use in improving the Brazilian cotton industry.
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