Belgium, August 26, 2004 -- CropChoice news -- Associated
Press: The U.S. will have to wait until next
year to see its fight with the European Union over biotech
foods resolved, as the World Trade Organization agreed
to an E.U. request to bring scientists into the debate,
officials said Thursday.
A WTO panel in Geneva decided Aug. 20 to allow expert
testimony before deciding on the complaint filed last
year by the U.S., Canada and Argentina over the E.U.'s
moratorium on approving genetically modified foods for
sale in Europe.
That means the panel's report, initially expected before
the end of this year, now will be delayed until late
March, according to WTO documents.
The U.S. had argued scientific advice wasn't needed
because the case revolved around legal issues, while
the E.U. has sought to move the debate from trade rules
to health and environmental protection. A U.S. official
said Washington accepted the panel's decision and would
be "participating in the process" of framing
questions to be debated.
There was no immediate E.U. comment.