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Chambliss Discourages Frivolous Trade Cases in WTO


Location: Washington, DC


Says Brazil and Canada Actions Will Erode Support

U.S. Senator Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.), Ranking Republican Member on the Senate Agriculture Committee, today issued the following statement expressing disappointment in the recent case brought by Brazil and Canada in the World Trade Organization (WTO) attempting to sway the farm bill reauthorization debate currently before Congress.

"Recent comments by Brazilian and Canadian officials that litigation in the WTO will force Congress to alter U.S. farm programs not only misses the mark but will likely embolden opponents of the Doha Round in the United States to move in the opposite direction in the upcoming farm bill debate. Litigation is never a constructive strategy in these situations and these actions will only erode the WTO support of farmers and ranchers across the country.

"The Doha Round negotiations are at a critical stage and the last thing we need are cases that act as irritants and undermine the efforts by our trade negotiators. The only way the United States will agree to reductions in these programs is part of a comprehensive market access package that lowers trade barriers in the agriculture and NAMA sectors.

"Congress cannot alter the farm safety net without the broad support of American farmers and ranchers. Our agricultural producers must have confidence that the Administration will be strong advocates for their interests. It would certainly undermine that confidence to recklessly highlight potential vulnerabilities that might encourage our trading partners to engage in a destructive course of litigation. American agriculture is frustrated that while the United States plays by the rules, our trading partners erect barriers targeting our products. I encourage the Administration to continue to work constructively with Congress during the development of the farm bill reauthorization in order to achieve our mutual goals of providing a strong safety net."

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