Statement by Bill Reinsch, President, National Foreign Trade Council
Washington, DC – In the following statement, Bill Reinsch, President of the National Foreign Trade Council, called on the U.S. Trade Representative to comply with this week’s WTO panel ruling that U.S. Section 201 steel safeguard tariffs violate WTO rules.
“The time is now for the U.S. to step up and show that leadership means not only negotiating rules, but also following the rules that are set.
“The decision by the WTO Appellate Body was reached properly, and the impetus now lies with the U.S. to respond in the proper way. At the end of the day, it is vital that all WTO members comply with WTO dispute settlement decisions – and the United States must set the example in this area. As the world’s largest importer and exporter, the U.S. has the most at stake in assuring an effective dispute settlement process at the WTO.
“In addition, as the world watches and waits for the U.S. to comply, the future of the Doha Round remains at stake. Prompt US compliance with the steel decision will help re-energize efforts to get the Round back on track by demonstrating continued US leadership and commitment to the WTO.
“Reputations are at stake as the U.S. makes its decision whether to comply with the WTO ruling – the reputation of both the U.S. as a leader in the global trading system and the reputation of American industry. If we expect countries to follow our lead, we must give them a precedent that our leadership is worth following.”
The National Foreign Trade Council is a leading business organization advocating an open, rules-based global trading system. Founded in 1914 by a broad-based group of American companies, the NFTC now serves 400 member companies through its offices in Washington and New York.