Brazil releases list of retaliation products
Daniel Lima Reporter Agencia Brasil
Brasília – Brazil’s Chamber of Foreign Trade (Camex) has released a list of products imported from the United States that it intends to slap surtaxes on totaling $591 million in retaliation for US cotton subsidies. The list is a mixed bag, going from automobiles to chewing gum, tooth paste, shampoo, cologne, fish, pears, beer and potatoes. But the most controversial item on the list is wheat (the import surtax will go from 10% to 30%), which it is believed will mean an increase in the price of bread for Brazilian consumers. However, the secretary for Foreign Trade (Ministry of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade), Lytha Spindola, says this will not happen as Brazil has alternative sources of wheat imports.
Brazil plans to collect another $238 million from the services sector, and intellectual property and patents the US holds, in order to reach the $829 million retaliation ceiling authorized by the World Trade Organization.
Carlos Marcio Cozendey, director of the Economics Department at the Foreign Ministry, says it was decided to expand the list of retaliation products beyond the farm sector (which was directly harmed by US cotton subsidies) in order to put some pressure on the US Congress. It is expected that producers of some of the products on the list will be calling their congressmen complaining about the surtaxes and asking why they have to lose market share in Brazil because of US cotton sector polices which harm developing nations all over the world and especially poor nations in Africa.
Allen Bennett - translator/editor The News in English