22 October 1998
USA escalates banana battle with EU

AMERICAN Government officials are preparing to retaliate against the European Unions banana import policy.

The US Government claims the EU has failed to comply with World Trade Organisation (WTO) regulations.

Under WTO rules, the EU must change its regime by 1 January, 1999. But the USA and five Latin American countries claim the new policy will be as discriminatory as the old.

The EU said the USA could only act after the WTO looked at the changes and found them wanting.

The banana case is one of a number of disputes currently at the WTO. Others include the EU ban on beef hormones.