21 May 1999
USA and EU start beef talks

EUROPEAN Union and US trade officials have started talks aimed at resolving their trade dispute over hormone-treated beef, reports the Financial Times.

Dan Glickman, the US agriculture secretary, and Franz Fischler, the acting EU agricultural commissioner, recently held talks in Dublin on the issue.

The two men are due to hold more talks at a gathering of trading powers in Vancouver on 16 July, although Mr Fischler hopes to reach agreement before then.

The World Trade Organisation (WTO) meets on 3 June to consider a US request to authorise 100% tariffs on annual EU exports of $202 million (£126m).

The request is being made in retaliation for the EUs failure to comply with a WTO ruling against the ban.

The EU has proposed compensating the USA by lowering other trade barriers.

But Washington says it will not agree to compensation unless the EU first sets a firm date for lifting the ban.