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WTO hears COOL retaliation arguments

The World Trade Organization last week heard arguments from the United States, Canada and Mexico on what the authorized amounts of retaliatory tariffs should be as a result of the country-of-origin labeling case.

The WTO earlier ruled in favor of Canada and Mexico and now the last step is determining the levels of retaliatory tariffs. Canada and Mexico are seeking a total of approximately $3.1 billion annually and the United States says it should only be $90.77 million. The WTO is expected to announce the level before the end of the year.

Unless Congress passes legislation to meet the WTO objections tariffs will be imposed later this year on a number of agricultural and manufacturing goods. The House of Representatives has passed legislation to repeal COOL. The Senate has two competing bills – one to repeal COOL and the other to provide for a voluntary COOL program. 

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