EU, U.S. press ahead on beef talks
EU Trade Commissioner Catherine Ashton and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk on Wednesday discussed a long-running dispute over hormone-treated beef and agreed to further talks to find a negotiated solution.
'We have agreed today that our senior officials will hold further talks with a view to finding a negotiated solution to the long-running dispute over hormone-treated beef,' Ashton said in a statement. 'We are both aware that this is a difficult issue that affects businesses and consumers in both the European Union and the United States. We want to overcome those difficulties, and we believe that a solution is within reach that will benefit both sides.'
Ashton said that the agreement reached Wednesday would see sanctions on certain EU products postponed for two weeks for facilitate further negotiations.
'When we met in March in Washington, D.C., we committed ourselves to a renewed effort to working through, and where possible resolving, the bilateral disputes in our trade relationship,' Ashton said. 'This gives us the chance to avoid a crisis that would lead to harmful sanctions as well as more litigation at the World Trade Organization.'