27 May 1999
Canada backs USA over hormone beef

CANADA has joined the USA in asking the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to authorise sanctions against the European Union for failing to lift its ban on hormone-treated beef.

It plans to ask for permission to impose 100% tariffs on EU goods worth US$51 million (£32m) in annual trade at the next meeting of WTOs dispute settlement body on 3 June.

The USA will be asking at the same meeting for sanctions worth US$202m (£126m) to be imposed.

Brussels has already offered compensation by way of improving market access for USA and Canadian products but this has been rejected.

EU ministers decided earlier this month to maintain the prohibition on hormone-treated beef following a report suggesting one of hormones used could cause cancer.