Skip to main content
Normal View

Dáil Éireann debate -
Tuesday, 15 Jun 1999

Vol. 506 No. 2

Written Answers. - EU-US Trade.

David Stanton


115 Mr. Stanton asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the trade areas affected by the banana wars between the EU and the US; the estimated cost to these companies both in business and employment terms; the remedial action, if any, being taken or planned by the Government in order to protect and compensate the companies involved; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [15403/99]

On 6 April 1999, a WTO panel ruled that the EU revised banana import regime is non-WTO compatible. The panel assessed the damage to US interests at $191 million, which is less than half the amount of sanctions threatened by the US. On 9 April, the US published a revised "hit-list" of European products to reflect the panel's findings, which would be subject to 100 per cent tariffs.

My Department and I are continuing to monitor the impact of these sanctions on Irish exporters. Some products of importance to Irish exporters which featured on the US preliminary list, including greeting cards, chandeliers and pig meat, are no longer affected, and the sanctions now have no significant impact on Irish trade or employment. There are ongoing discussions within the EU and also between the EU Commission and the US, with a view to resolving the dispute. Ireland is very active in these discussions. We support a WTO compatible resolution of the dispute.