On 18 October 2016, the European Commission issued a proposal where it called on EU Member States to support its efforts to provide the EU with updated, strengthened and more robust trade defence instruments.
FTA agrees with the EU Commission’s statement that trade is essential for growth, jobs and competitiveness and would like to underline that free trade must also be fair trade. FTA also holds the view that unfair trading practices must be addressed regarding trade defence instruments as the best method. We have never advocated for the removal of these instruments: we do, however, believe they should be used in an appropriate, measured, fair and above all in a transparent manner.
FTA does not agree to the Commission’s proposal for the removal of the lesser duty rule as it risks harming many importer and retailer companies. The forthcoming proposal on market distortions such as China’s Market Economy Status (MES) solution is one in which we believe will address industry concerns.