February 02, 2005

Idaho Delegation Seeks Appeal In Wheat Trade Case

Letter to U.S. Trade Representative notes monopoly of Canadian Wheat Board

Washington, DC - Idahoâ??s Congressional Delegation has requested a formal appeal of a World Trade Organization ruling that puts Idaho grain growers in an unfair trade and marketing position regarding wheat sales to Canada. The delegation wrote Ambassador Robert Zoellick, the U.S. Trade Representative, to express concern with the WTO ruling against the U.S. claim that the Canadian Wheat Board (CWB) violates trade laws by using monopolistic tactics. This results in unfair trade practices against Idaho and U.S. producers. They want Zoellick to appeal the ruling.â??For far too long the activities of the CWB have been injuring Idahoâ??s wheat farmers. The CWB remains an arm of the Government of Canada. It operates as a monopoly requiring that Canadian growers sell their wheat to the CWB,â?? the delegation wrote in the letter to Zoellick. â??This puts U.S. wheat producers at a disadvantage and we must persist in our efforts to ensure that our trading partners operate within the confines of our trade laws.â??The Idaho Delegation said the monopoly issue means the WTO should not have ruled against U.S. claims under Article XVII of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), which outline monopolistic tactics. The WTO earlier agreed with separate U.S. claims that Canadaâ??s grain handling system discriminates against foreign grain.# # #