The arbiter panel of the World Trade Organization (WTO) in general supports an E.U. case against Russia’s prohibition of imports of its pork products, according to a WTO statement.
The arbiters say that several measures introduced by Russia contradict the country’s WTO obligations.
On January 30, 2014, the Russian veterinary authority prohibited imports of European pork products until the receipt of safety warrants from the European Commission after an outbreak of African swine fever in Lithuania.
The E.U. called the prohibition a disproportional measure and sent a petition to convoke an expert group over the disagreement to the WTO.
Permanent Russia’s representative in the WTO Gennady Ovechko said that Russia would analyze the decision and decide whether to contest it.
An official of the Economic Development Ministry said that the probability that Russia would appeal the decision was high and that a decision would be made within several weeks.
Director of the Russian Veterinary and Phytosanitary Oversight Service Sergei Dankvert said that the WTO arbiters’ decisions were biased.
“We are following our own way, there is nothing to worry about, someone wins, someone loses as always. I did not have a slightest doubt that the decision would be merely political, as with the dope, in the conditions when there is such a pressure on Russia. I mean, Europe had 2,500 African swine fever outbreaks in two years, we had this many in eight years, and they are doing nothing”, the official said.
The Russian authority also issued a statement where it warned about a fast spread of the disease in Poland and Baltic states. (Prime/Business World Magazine)