In the on-going battle over Canada’s subsidizing of dairy product exports, the United States has filed a complaint with the World Trade Organization (WTO) that includes up to $35 million in increased tariffs on Canadian products. New Zealand, one of the largest exporters of dairy products, has joined the U.S. in the formal complaint.

The complaint requests that the WTO reconvene a dispute settlement panel to examine whether Canada has complied with the October 1999 WTO ruling that required Canada to bring its dairy export subsidy program into compliance with current WTO agreements. The U.S. and New Zealand contend that Canada’s new programs do not meet the subsidy reduction requirements set forth in the WTO Agreement on Agriculture.

If the WTO panel determines that Canada has not met the requirements, the U.S. has asked the WTO to suspend current trade concessions on Canadian products. Doing so would allow the U.S. to impose up to $35 million in additional tariffs on Canadian products. The $35 million equals the estimated amount of annual harm to the U.S. economy caused by Canada’s dairy export subsidies.

Office of the United States Trade Representative