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European producers ask the US to immediately delete tariffs on Spanish black olives

Copa and Cogeca believe that the only way to implement WTO rules is to eliminate these tariffs without delay.


Spanish black olives.

The World Trade Organization (WTO) panel has ruled in favour of the EU in the case against the US due to the tariffs imposed on the Spanish black olives. This WTO ruling says that the US have not implemented the first panel report which said these tariffs had no validity under the WTO rules. Despite sufficient time being granted by both the EU and the WTO, the US continued without correctly implementing the WTO rules.

Copa and Cogeca consider that the only way to implement the WTO rules is to abolish these tariffs without delay. The US cannot give more excuses to continue with delaying the elimination of these unjustified tariffs.

Apart from the substantial damage done to the Spanish black olive sector, these tariffs impacted rural areas by affecting the local economy, with thousands of jobs lost. Additionally, they also put at risk the international legitimacy of the CAP, and it is hence very important that the EU does the utmost to maintain the international legitimacy of its Common Agricultural Policy, by ensuring this remains an isolated case.

The US and the EU are and must continue to be strategic partners dealing with common challenges, especially in the current geopolitical landscape. Unjustified and under international law illegal trade tariffs-imposed unilaterality have no place between such strategic partners. 

Copa and Cogeca want to thank the European Commission and its delegation to the WTO for the work done in defending the international rule-based trade and the Spanish olive sector and ask them to ensure that the US proceeds with immediate abolishment of these tariffs. 


The US imposed the antidumping and countervailing duties on the Spanish black olives arguing that the Spanish producers take advantages of the EU support to achieve higher competitiveness in comparison to the US producers, despite the CAP support respecting all the WTO rules. On the 19 May 2019 the EU requested the establishment of a WTO panel considering that these tariffs were illegal based on the international trade rules. On the 20 December 2021 the WTO adopted the panel report underlining that these tariffs don’t respect the WTO rules. After allowing for a sufficient period for the US to implement these rules but without positive outcome, the EU requested another WTO panel to rule if the US has correctly implemented the ruling of the first panel. The ruling published yesterday in fact establishes that there has not been correct implementation on the US side.

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