Nicaragua accuses US of violating WTO rules in sugar trade | New

On Wednesday, the Nicaraguan Ministry of Development, Industry and Trade (MIFIC) denounced that the United States had violated the rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO) by canceling a purchase of 22,114 tons of Nicaraguan sugar. .


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“For this 2022-2023 production cycle, Nicaragua has been assigned the marketing of 22,114 tons of sugar in the United States through a quota established with the WTO,” Minister Jesus Bermudez said.

“The United States made an exception, using it as a political mechanism, to withdraw the Nicaraguan quota. This violates WTO rules,” he added, recalling that Nicaragua and 39 other countries are parties to a WTO-backed agreement whereby the United States buys 1.1 million tons of sugar annually.

However, the recent cancellation of imports does not affect purchase agreements made under the Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA).

“This quota has nothing to do with the CAFTA quota, which is 29,040 metric tons. Our sugar industry can continue to export this quantity to the United States,” Bermudez explained and invited Nicaraguan businessmen to seek other export destinations in countries such as South Korea, Bulgaria, the United Kingdom or Chile.

On April 20, the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) announced the reallocation of sugar imports for fiscal year 2023. However, Nicaragua was not on the list of beneficiary countries.

Currently, the 22,114 tonnes that will not be imported by the United States is valued at approximately $9 million and represents 6% of Nicaragua’s annual sugar production.

Rachel J. Bradford