Argentina Sour over Lemons

This month Argentina has filed its third trade complaint in two weeks, the World Trade Organization said on Monday, challenging U.S. laws that it says have blocked imports of fresh lemons from Argentina.

The United States, Japan and Mexico filed trade complaints about Argentina’s import licensing policies two weeks ago, prompting Argentina to say it would hit back with complaints over U.S. beef and lemons. It filed the complaint about beef on Aug. 30.

The US has expressed concerned with a disturbing trend in which countries engaged in actions that are inconsistent with their WTO obligations retaliate with counter-complaints rather than fix the underlying problem raised in complaint.

The United States must try to settle the dispute in bilateral talks with Argentina. If that fails, after 60 days Argentina could demand the WTO adjudicate on the dispute.