EU challenges Argentine food import restrictions

14:48, May 13, 2010      

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The European Union (EU) on Wednesday challenged Argentina's food import restrictions, warning that they are contrary to World Trade Organization rules.

Last week, Argentine Interior Commerce Minister Guillermo Moreno issued an order banning all the country's main supermarket chains to import goods that can be made at home.

"The restrictions, when enforced, will be incompatible with the norms of the World Trade Organization and the commitments by Argentina in the framework of G20," said the European Commission Delegation to Argentina in a statement.

Argentina benefits a lot from external food trade, with a huge surplus in Argentina's favor, it said.

The statement also said that the measures which were announced just a few days before the possible re-launch of trade negotiations between the EU and the Southern Common Market "are inexplicable."

"The negotiations ... are aimed to increase the import and export flows between the sides. Therefore, the EU calls on the Argentine authorities not to enforce the announced measures," the statement said.

Source: Xinhua
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