Steel And Tax Incentives Still Draw EU's Ire

By John S. McClenahen The 15-nation European Union (EU) and the U.S. never hesitate to denounce what each sees as the other's trade transgressions. And the EU annually issues a report on alleged U.S. tariff and nontariff barriers to trade. The latest report, released this week, takes the U.S. to task for failing to resolve a long-running dispute over export tax incentives, the Bush Administration's steel-import quotas, a container security initiative take in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist tacks, and some of the new rules designed to improve corporate accountability. The EU is complaining, again, about U.S. sanctions on trade with Iran and Libya, restrictions on doing business with Cuba, and restrictions on foreign participation in U.S. government procurement. However, an EU statement accompanying 2002's just-released list of gripes is more conciliatory than some past language has been. Specifically, the EU notes "deepening . . . bilateral cooperation with U.S. authorities" and cites "the intensified cooperation" that came out of this past May's U.S.-EU summit meeting. With roughly $400 billion worth of goods and services flowing across the Atlantic, the U.S. and the EU are each other's biggest trading partners.

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