US Challenges Chinese Tariffs on Chicken

Posted September 20th, 2011 at 4:11 pm (UTC-5)
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The United States is accusing China of violating international trade rules by imposing hefty tariffs on American chicken exports.

The U.S. government filed a complaint with the World Trade Organization in Geneva, seeking to overturn Beijing's imposition of 50 to 100 percent levies against the exported chicken. China imposed the fees a year ago, apparently in retaliation against U.S. action to limit the import of Chinese tires. China claimed U.S. chicken exporters were sending the poultry to China at unfairly low prices.

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said the Chinese tariffs could threaten 300,000 U.S. agricultural jobs and cost chicken producers $1 billion by the end of this year. He said 90 percent of the U.S. chicken exports to China have ended since the tariffs went into effect.

Under WTO rules, the two countries will have 60 days to try to resolve the dispute, but if that fails the United States can ask the WTO to consider its complaint.

The United States, the world's largest economy, has also filed complaints against China, with the second biggest economy, over its tariffs on steel products and subsidies on wind power equipment.