Trade Minister Clarifies Itc Recommendations On Lamb

  • Lockwood Smith

Trade Minister Lockwood Smith has moved to clarify any misunderstanding that may exist around the United States International Trade Commission's (ITC) findings about the effect of imports of New Zealand lamb on the US sheep meat industry.

"The United States ITC finding, which I have attached to this statement, clearly states that lamb imports represent 'a substantial cause of the threat of serious injury to the domestic industry," Dr Smith said.

"This is a key point in New Zealand's argument, and we cannot allow the ITC recommendations to be re-interpreted.

"Because the ITC found that our lamb only represented a threat of injury, the United States would have no justification for restricting imports of lamb below current volumes, as the finding effectively acknowledges that current volumes are not causing actual injury.

"I have spoken to US Ambassador Josiah Beeman this afternoon and re-stressed this point, and I will continue to ensure that the US Government is under no illusion about the importance of this case to New Zealand, and our view that trade restrictions against our lamb exports will not accomplish anything whilst doing very real harm to our shared goal of trade liberalisation," Dr Smith concluded.