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Barshefsky Calls Clinton An "Extraordinary Force"

Transcript: Barshefsky Calls Clinton An "Extraordinary Force" In APEC

(USTR Barshefsky Nov. 14 press conference in Brunei) (6070)

As the United States works on economic issues at the APEC meetings in Brunei, there should be "no question that Bill Clinton has been an extraordinary force within APEC," according to U.S. Trade Representative Charlene Barshefsky.

In a November 14 press conference in Brunei, site of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings, Barshefsky took time from outlining specific U.S. positions on various trade issues to give that assessment of the impact Clinton has had on the 21-member organization.

This is the eighth and final APEC Leaders' Meeting for President Clinton, who attended his first APEC meeting in 1993. Clinton ends his second and final term as President in January.

"Whether it was his creation of the Leaders' Forum beginning at Blake Island and his conception of it," Barshefsky said, Clinton has been instrumental in moving APEC forward.

"The bottom line is the United States will always remain a driver in APEC, just as we are a driver in the World Trade Organization (WTO)," she said.

The APEC meetings in Brunei have achieved accord on a variety of issues, Barshefsky said, including an agreement to continue the moratorium on customs duties on "electronic transmissions on the Net. In other words, the duty-free cyberspace."

Furthermore, she said, APEC "agrees to avoid measures that restrict the use and development of e-commerce."

Barshefsky explained the importance of that APEC stance since the WTO, as yet, has not agreed to that principle.

"Having the APEC countries agree that there should be no burden on the use and development of e-commerce is a very important beachhead for us in this next great area of trade, which is e-commerce and the Net," Barshefsky said.

APEC, she went on, has agreed to press for a task force in the WTO to "look at the relationship between WTO rules and e-commerce."

In the area of collective action by APEC members, Barshefsky pointed to the decision to develop a "comprehensive framework to address services trade," an area of perennial concern to the United States, which traditionally has a trade surplus in services.

On another area of long-term U.S. concern, Barshefsky said the APEC trade ministers agreed "on some steps" to better protect the intellectual property rights (IPR) of software developers, particularly regarding "government use of pirated software."

The issue is an important one for the United States, Barshefsky said, "because if governments pirate, so too do their populations."

Following is a transcript of the briefing:

(begin transcript)

Remarks by USTR Charlene Barshefsky

At APEC International Convention Center

Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei

November 14, 2000

BARSHEFSKY: Let me just start with a couple of things. I'll just talk with you about APEC, but I assume you'll ask questions on all sorts of stuff.

I think that we've taken some important steps again in APEC this year as we move toward the Bogor goals. First of all, if we look at sort of areas of traditional APEC activity, which are the individual action plans and the collective actions plans, I think one of the most significant steps taken, and it is a significant step, is that these individual action plans are now going to be on-line. One of the difficulties with these plans has been that there is no way to compare them and no way, really, because of that, to engender competitiveness between the nations as to trade openness and liberalization initiatives.

As these plans are put on-line, one would be able to compare, for example, the range of tariff cuts that each country unilaterally intends to put into place on widgets. And some countries will be high and some countries will be low. It will be the first time that you can actually compare what the individual counties are willing to do on their own. That also is relevant to the question of investment. Money is finite, and it will flow to its best and most productive sources. And to the extent, investors are in a position to compare the openness of the different APEC economies one against another. I think we'll see some very interesting potential shifts in investment flows as well.

On the second area of traditional APEC activity, which is the collective action plan, that is to say, stuff that everybody agrees to, I think that we have taken up work in a number of very important areas. One is the development of a comprehensive framework to address services trade. We in the U.S., in the WTO context, are working on what we call "model services schedules"--a template to be used for open services trade around the world in different sectors. And we are also going to put that work in the APEC context, so that we can build this with ITA a coalition of countries that would like to see particular outcomes.

Second of all, we've agreed on some steps to better protect software with respect to IPR, particularly the question of government use of pirated software. We have programs in the U.S. now on this subject, this is a very big subject, because if governments pirate, so too do their populations. And again, we will be taking a lot of the work that we've done in this area into APEC in full, and there is agreement for that.

There will be additional work done on what's called standards conformity. This is a very important area commercially--it's a dry area, I suppose intellectually, but if product standards differ, you just can't sell from market to market to market. And the question is making all of those standards conform. We have a very active program on this with the EU, again, the benefit of that work is going to be put into APEC.

I think though putting aside the traditional APEC activity, the areas I said yesterday in the press conference where APEC provides the greatest value-added is in the high-tech area. You have in APEC over half the world's economy, and you have the technology leaders. When you look at the U.S. and Japan, the smaller countries, whether Malaysia or Singapore, the Philippines, as you know which is a center for e-commerce trouble-shooting and so on, you have an extraordinary array of talent in APEC. And here, there are just a couple of points to be made, and then I'll stop.

One is that APEC agrees to continue the moratorium on customs duties on electronic transmissions on the Net. In other words, the duty-free cyberspace. In addition, APEC agrees to avoid measures that restrict the use and development of e-commerce. This is very significant because this is a principle not yet agreed in the WTO, to which there is some developing country resistance in the WTO. But having the APEC countries agree that there should be no burden on the use and development of e-commerce is a very important beachhead for us in this next great area of trade, which is e-commerce and the Net.

Third, APEC agreeing to press in the WTO for a task force to look at the relationship between WTO rules and e-commerce. This is an initiative currently in Geneva blocked by the EU, just as ITA had been blocked by the EU. We're in a position now with all of the APEC countries which will together press the WTO to begin this task-force exercise. This is an enormous exercise, because WTO rules have always related to the movement of tangible goods, other than IPR, other than intellectual property rights, WTO rules relate to the movement typically of tangible goods.

What do you do in a digitalized economy? What happens? Where's the sale? Whose contract prevails? Where's the legal redress? What about nondiscrimination? What about transparency? What happens to product standards? Are there product standards? Is something that is digitized over the Net and downloaded a good or a service? What is it? That matters, because WTO rules in these various areas differ wildly.

So this is an area that is going to be years of work. But as I said in the press conference yesterday, this area is not a subset of goods or services. Over time, it will likely subsume goods and services. And so we've got to look to see what is the most sensible global trade regime and series of rules that apply to e-commerce and apply to the age of the Internet. This is where APEC's value-added is greatest, because of the fact that in the WTO itself you have many developing countries that either don't understand the technology, or don't have access to the technology, or who believe this technology, just as in goods trades years ago, is a way to collect revenue-that is to say, a trade-barrier mentality.

The APEC economies look at this in an entirely different way, and this is the greatest area of value added. I had a very lengthy intervention on e-commerce issues because last month I unveiled in the U.S. a network world initiative. So six points that we're going to take to APEC, which we just did, to the WTO, and in the FTAA, the Free Trade Area of the Americas talks. I went through this tremendous APEC interest in these areas which will now be rounded up and brought as well to this WTO task force.

One, the trade principles that should apply to e-commerce. Two, investment in high-tech infrastructure, including telecom services. A lot more work needs to be done in the WTO on telecom services. Three, the liberalization of services trade, particularly in those areas where the Net is going to become increasingly important like computer services, like professional services, and so on. Fourth, the further elimination of world tariffs on high-tech goods. The ITA is a tremendous start, but now what you have is a convergence of technologies, and there is quite a bit of work to be done there on making sure that the converged technology doesn't attract customs duties or that duties on goods that have converged are also removed. Fifth, intellectual property rights. How you protect intellectual property rights in a digitized world is a very, very, very complicated area. We have the Internet, the so-called WIPO Internet treaties, that's one aspect. But there's going to be a whole array of WTO rules that are developed in this area because they'll have to be developed.

Last, the issue of the digital divide. This is a very complicated issue-quite a bit of discussion about this. The single most animated series of discussions among the APEC trade ministers was on e-commerce, the Net, how do we fit the WTO into that, what do we do about the digital divide, this discussion went on all morning. Very animated, there's a huge interest in this area among the APEC economies, because most people believe APEC has a comparative advantage in these areas of trade. So, this digital divide issue, I can't say that there were any grand solutions posed, but it's obviously a concern, you all know that it is a concern in the U.S. as it is within Europe--the haves, the have-nots with respect to availability and accessibility of the new technologies and so on.

Globally, the problem is actually even more acute. So, this is where this entire area is where I think APEC has its very greatest value added. That was clear when it was APEC that generated the ITA, which would never have happened had APEC not pushed it. It has been clear in bringing the duty-free cyberspace moratorium to the WTO, our whole base of pushing this initiative was APEC. It will be clear again as we now set up, or push to set up, this WTO task force to go through the six points I have made and to take a look at how we begin to restructure global trade rules in light of the Net. So, in any event, that's what I think we did here. The leaders will discuss a range of issues as you know, and that's that.

If I could make one small comment, which is, I saw a story in, I don't know who wrote it, yes, Agence France Presse, that somehow Rafidah and I had a heated exchange. I just have to respond to this because I thought this was pretty funny. When I did my WTO intervention, Rafidah had not yet arrived in the country. And when she did her intervention, I was not in the room, having been in bilaterals all afternoon.

This exchange never happened; we never were in the same room at the same time. We did have an exchange when we were in the room at the same time on all of these issues I have just gone through. She had an idea on e-commerce, which was a great idea, which I supported, and she supported our task force idea in the WTO. Her idea on e-commerce, which, you know, sometimes someone gives an idea and you think, "God, why didn't anybody ever say that before, because it seems so logical, but no one had?" Her point was, APEC does a lot of work on mobility of labor, but no work on bringing together sort of the key IT professionals in the APEC region. That's never been done. Which seems really odd when you consider APEC's focus on the tech issues. So everyone agreed that ought to be the next area that the committee in APEC on labor mobility starts to put together.

Whether it's a series of conferences, I can't tell you how they'll do it. But most people around the room thought that, first of all, it was a very perceptive comment-it just simply slipped through the cracks. And second of all, we were supportive. And likewise, there was virtually unanimity on the way in which we had approached e-commerce issues. Anyway, so, that's that.

QUESTION: What is the current value of e-commerce, how fast is it growing, and

how does it compare with trade, merchandise trade?

BARSHEFSKY: I'll give you the numbers that I have. I can do that. I don't know if it will answer fully your range of questions. But let me give you a couple of basic numbers. Within the APEC region, it is estimated that 246 million people have access to the Net; that is 65% of the world's total. In the past three years, Internet users have more than tripled in China, more than doubled in Malaysia and Korea, and have grown by half in Vietnam. I want to make a comment about Vietnam, but I'll do that in a minute.

Q: That's in the last six years?

BARSHEFSKY: In the past three years, Internet users have more than tripled in China, more than doubled in Malaysia and Korea, and grown by half in Vietnam. But Internet penetration varies dramatically among the APEC members. In some economies, over 40 percent of the population uses the Net. In other economies, it less than one percent. So that's some general stuff on that. Let me see if I have any other statistics that would be, I've got the general trade statistics. I don't know if you all want that. Let me give them to you; you can decide if you ever want to use them.

Exports by APEC members were over two and a half trillion in 1998, up 113 percent since 1989, so over 10 years. In 1989, in the APEC countries, trade accounted for 29 percent of APEC GDP. Now trade accounts for 37 percent of APEC GDP. Our trade, U.S. trade with APEC, is over 1.1 trillion in 99. That is two-thirds of U.S. trade with the world. It is one-tenth of our Gross National Product. Anyway, so that is just some general stuff.

One word about Vietnam. I meant to mention this, I thought this was really, you may not find this fascinating, I thought this was fascinating. As we were talking about e-commerce and the Net, and I went through my, you know, views on the need to set up this group in the WTO, and what APEC should be doing and so on, people around the room made interventions, you know, in support. And then Vietnam said--this is so amazing to me--Vietnam said, "Well, of course we have to do this, because this is the way the world is moving, and APEC should of course push these issues within APEC and in the WTO."

Vietnam is not a member of the WTO. Vietnam is a late-blooming economy in the context of the Asia-Pacific region. It is certainly not a market economy. You know that we've just completed a very large bilateral agreement with Vietnam, bilateral trade agreement this past July. But I was struck by how much the world is changing. Could anyone around this table have imagined even five year ago that Vietnam would not only have an appreciation for the power of this technology but would affirmatively want to ensure that it could develop in an unimpeded fashion? I just found that remarkable. Anyway . . .

QUESTION: Is there a big divide within East Asia and Southeast Asia in terms of penetration of the Internet, and is there any sort of growing tension or pressure between those countries, maybe Southeast Asians who sort of feel that they're being left behind because they haven't been able to do sort of high-tech investment and...

BARSHEFSKY: Right. You know, I don't...I honestly don't know the answer. I am not sure where the divides are, because I have just the aggregate numbers I gave you on the penetration ratios. I don't, I can't give you what the list of countries is. Obviously, the penetration ratio in the U.S. is very high. It's less in Japan, as you know. My assumption is penetration ratio in Vietnam is very, very low--although growing--but from a very, very small base. But I can't, I just don't have the numbers to be able to parse through the individual countries. I just don't know.

QUESTION: Can I ask you a bit of a broader question? We have three terms of talk about relevance-about how APEC is relevant and how it is going to stay relevant. How much of this is being driven by the fact that President Clinton, who was the driving force of bringing the leaders together, is leaving office--there are political changes--that there are fears that APEC may flounder without the kind of political leadership, that leaders will actually come to summits? How much of that is driving this fear about relevance?

BARSHEFSKY: I can't tell exactly but there is no question that Bill Clinton has been an extraordinary force within APEC. There's no question about it. Whether it was his creation of the Leaders' Forum beginning at Blake Island and his conception of it, whether it has been his work on things like ITA-at the end of the day, it was Bill Clinton sitting down with two APEC holdouts on the fringes of the Leaders' Meeting basically explaining why APEC had to move in this direction. This was Clinton.

I think whether it's simply his great intellectual capacity, and with APEC leaders appreciating the range of the President's knowledge and communicative abilities, but the bottom line is the United States will always remain a driver in APEC, just as we are a driver in the WTO, just as we conceived of and put into motion the Free Trade Area of the Americas Talks. And the next President of the United States-[softly] Al Gore-will [laughter] continue to be a driver.

Certainly there'll be turnover, and maybe in their first meeting--folks are getting to know each other. But I think that the U.S. will always continue to be a driver in this process. But I understand there's probably a little bit of uncertainty on the part of countries around the world as any transition, and of course, there is more than one going in the next year or two as any transition occasions.

Q: I was just wondering how much of APEC [inaudible] -- traditional APEC issues are trade issues is driving this quest for relevance as it were.

BARSHEFSKY: I kind of laugh at this question. It comes up at every APEC meeting. It even came at the meeting where we did the ITA, which kind of made me laugh. I can't imagine how any thinking person could question the relevance of the leaders of over half the world's economy getting together on an annual basis to talk through the great issues of the day. How little imagination there must be, to think that somehow that it is not relevant.

Q: That's an interesting comment insomuch that it suggests that, I mean, the importance of APEC is actually much broader than its stated agenda.

BARSHEFSKY: It is always been much broader; take a look the President's relationship with President Jiang. How did that develop? It developed because of APEC. Because every year the President of United States sat down with the President of China, and went through not only APEC issues, not only trade issues, but the question of North Korea or the question of India and Pakistan and nuclear detonation, or the question of our own bilateral relationship with China, not only on trade but non-proliferation and human rights and religious freedom.

How do you think that relationship developed? The President of China has been to the U.S. once. Bill Clinton has been to China once. But they have met between APEC and the UN over a dozen times. This has incalculable effects. Incalculable, and if that is true for the other leaders all round, all round, I think the forum is simply amazing. Simply amazing.

Q: I may follow up on my VOA colleague's question. One of the foreign ministers of an APEC country raised an interesting concern with the U.S., not the specifics about the situation in Florida or anything, but, however the U.S. election comes down, the mandate will be rather slim, and this particular country may have been voicing APEC concerns, was wondering with such a slim mandate, the political will and vigor at WTO or in APEC forums will be lacking.

BARSHEFSKY: I think that the vigor on trade issues will remain. It has to. Because our economy has become increasingly dependent on open trade regimes around the world. And our economic growth, the dampening of inflation, the broadening of consumer choice, is dependant as well on the openness of our economy at home. That's the economic reality for the United States.

We have become the world's largest, not only importer as it used to be, but the world's largest exporter. When Bill Clinton took office, the world's largest exporter was Germany. That's no longer the case. It's the United States. So, I think putting aside what the numbers may show in the House and what the numbers may show in Senate, so on and so forth, you know, the obvious closeness of the election, this push which has been so aggressive during the Clinton years to open markets and to keep our own market open, I believe, will continue.

I think the first task, and I mean there are a numbers of first tasks if you will, certainly the Free Trade Area of the Americas should be brought to fruition. My own view is that while it is slated, while the negotiation is slated for completion by 2005, that date should be accelerated. I see no reason this agreement can't be finalized in 2003. No reason at all. We will have by the end of this year or early next a first rough-cut draft of the agreement, it won't be complete, not all of the chapters will complete but we have quietly been working on this for five years and you will soon see it --heavily bracketed though it may be--in tangible form.

Second, of course, the launch of the new round, which I believe should be able to be accomplished within 2001. I think that the APEC statement on getting an agenda done in 2001, that is the launch. Once you have the agenda, you have the launch, it's the same thing. I think that that is doable. We have spent a lot of time working with Europe the past eight or nine months, working with Canada and Japan and about a dozen key developing countries and I think we are quite a bit closer on the bounds of what a sensible agenda might be. We are not all the way there yet, but a lot progress has been made, and I think that will move forward. The high-tech agenda will absolutely be pursued using this new WTO forum once it is created using APEC, but this is going to be an area that is really of explosive growth for policy makers. There is no question about it.

The question of how to move toward Bogor, I think will occupy the next administration. So sub-regional or bilateral free trade agreements within the region can be useful in moving toward Bogor as you begin to create a critical mass of openness, if you will, but those need to be real free trade agreements--not imaginary free trade agreements, not partial free trade agreements--real free trade agreements. And to the extent they are, that will move the region in the more genuine way toward the Bogor goals. I think that will be very, very important.

I am trying to think of what other big things...I think the U.S. ought to be pursuing potentially a couple of different kinds of free trade agreements, certainly one within Asia, whether bilateral with particular countries or whether a pluralateral grouping like a P5, I think that's one area.

I think that a second area is to look again at the question of a free trade agreement with Europe. This is something Sir Leon Brittan and I actually had spent a considerable time on about three years ago, but was not accepted at a time by some of the member states. I think it is worth looking at again. The administration or the Europeans may decide not to do it, but it's worth looking at again.

I think that a new administration would probably look at every one of those issues in a pretty careful manner. There are other issues obviously but I'm sort of giving you at least a sampling, and I think whichever party takes over the White House, these will be among the great issues that they look at.

Q: Does the flurry of bilateral trade agreements signal to you that some countries are worried that APEC or the WTO is not moving fast enough, or does it just say to you, well, this in fact could help us along? How are you viewing it?

BARSHEFSKY: You know, it might be a little of both, it's hard to know. Different countries have different motives for entering into these kinds of agreements. We just did a free trade agreement with Jordan, which is notable in two respects. One, it's important to the peace process, which is not the usual reason for doing agreements of this sort but there you have it. And, two, as you know, it's the first agreement of its kind that has labor and environmental provisions in the body of the agreement.

Other countries, I think, look to do free trade agreements for some short-term, competitive advantage. Others for strategic reasons--the building of strategic alliances through closer trade relations. Others, as in the case of Japan, as a defensive measure-- they don't have any, they want one or two, and still others to help..."stabilize" isn't quite the right word but at least to help cement relations, particularly in their own neighborhood.

You know one of the genesis of the Free Trade Area of the Americas is this is our neighborhood. And you have 34 countries, democracy is young, you want to support those democratic processes. And democracy is often best preserved when it's in its infancy by demonstrating that democracy also brings prosperity. So, there are lots of different reasons, I think, and different motivations for people embarking on these agreements. Can they spur a healthy competition and a greater openness on the global basis? Yes! Do they necessarily? No! And that's why I say these agreements need to be genuine free trade agreements, not cherry picking the easy areas and leaving the hard issues highly blocked. But if you going to open, you open.

Q: When you look at the two bilateral...[inaudible] probably the most, the furthest advanced are between Singapore and New Zealand, and the one where the negotiations are about to start between Japan and Singapore. Do you regard...that they are comprehensive, transparent that anyone who wants to join can? As far as I know they don't contain labor or environmental provisions. Does that make them partial as far as the United States is concerned?

BARSHEFSKY: Under the WTO rules, no! If the agreements are as you described--and I haven't read them--but if they are as you've described, under WTO rules they are considered free trade agreements. And it's very important that the WTO general rule be met.

For the United States, this issue of the intersection of trade-in-labor and trade-in-the-environment, is one that's going to have to be reckoned with, regardless who the President is. It is a must, because you have an evenly divided Senate and you have a nearly evenly divided House of Representatives. I believe no Democratic...near majority in the House in particular will approve a free trade agreement without labor and environment being reflected in some way in that agreement.

The Jordan agreement is, I think, a potentially important model. Certainly it's not the only way of going about trying to address these issues, but if I could just spend a minute on this, because this is going to be a huge policy debate in the United States.

The opponents of trade tend to raise two basic arguments: one on the environmental side, one on the labor side. On the labor side, the fear is that as free trade agreements lead to increases in trade flows, and therefore, intensified competition, governments will begin to suppress the rights of workers, and therefore, standards of living of those workers will actually decline. On the environmental side, the argument is similar, which is, free trade agreements bring increased trade flows, increased trade flows tend either, per se, to damage the environment, or once again free trade flows lead to such intense competitive pressure including for investment dollars that countries will begin systematically to not enforce its own laws as a mean of attracting investment, as a mean of pulling in more trade. What we did in the Jordan agreement is to remove both of those arguments, but in a way that is we believe entirely free trade driven.

As you know the Clinton administration has been an open-trade administration. Our bone fides, I think, were tested mightily during the Asian financial crisis, and I am pleased to say that we did not let world down. What we did in the Jordan agreement what's to say, in essence, "Jordan, you have your laws on labor and on the environment. We the U.S. have our laws on labor and on the environment. We respect you have the right to set whatever standards you want, you have to respect the right, the notion that we have the right to set whatever standards we want. This is a matter of your sovereignty; it's a matter of our sovereignty. But enforce your laws--your laws that you have now. Enforce them, we'll do the same. And should either of us systematically and consistently fail to enforce the laws we have in place, as a means to attract investment, as a means to increase trade or competitiveness, then we can go to dispute settlement over it."

This is potentially a way forward on these contentious issues, which is to say, the notion that increasing trade can be accomplished while countries continue to enforce their basic standards, their own basic standards. We've not asked Jordan to change their laws, we've not asked them to amend their laws, we've not said improvements in their laws are preconditioned to dealing with the United States. We've said is you have certain standards that you have set. In the case of Jordan, for a small country, they're, I would say, fairly impressive. We have standards we've set, in the case of the wealthy, developed country, they're even more impressive.

"You enforce what you have, we will enforce what we have. We won't systematically begin to suppress the rights of workers, the rights that they now hold, or degrade the environment, should trade increase, or should competitive pressure increase." Now we've made it clear in the agreement, of course. We all retain the right to modify our laws as we see fit--no question about that. But we are talking now about the case of systematic non-enforcement, for the purpose of pulling in more investment, for the purpose of trying to gain an illusory competitive advantage.

So, this, I think, presents potentially one way, not the only way, and it may not work in all instances, but one way, to take into account the concerns labor NGO's have, concerns labor unions have, that the environment or their own people begin to lose out as governments decide standards that were set too high they need to be lowered, they need to be brought down, because competition is so intense.

Q: Does it bother you that there doesn't seem to be any NGO's here?

BARSHEFSKY: I don't know if it bothers me or not. I assume they certainly could have come. I just don't have any way of knowing.

I think NGO involvement in meetings of this sort is actually a rather healthy thing. How can you live in a world of the Internet. Instant communication, instant messaging, instant information, and tell people they can't be where the meeting is, or they can't know what's going on in the meeting, when 30 seconds later, it's all on the Net in any event? We have to begin to reconcile the need for public participation and public disclosure with the reality that there is extraordinary public participation and public disclosure that occurs everyday, because you are living in an entirely different information-oriented world.

Q: Are you saddened that [inaudible] said that ... [inaudible] ?

BARSHEFSKY: That I didn't know. If that's the case, that certainly makes me quite sad.

Q: Would you comment a little bit about the anti-dumping, uh, U.S. policy on anti-dumping, is it going to have to change, where the U.S. enforces its controls?

BARSHEFSKY: Is this on the Europe issues?

Q: Now, there are two rulings against the U.S., there's one on Korea.

BARSHEFSKY: To tell you the truth, I don't know the answer. I think Norman Mineta is still here and his Commerce folks are still here, I think actually in one of the cases the dumping order had already been revoked, so it's kind of a moot point-in other words, I think we lost the case but before the ruling came down some months previous, the dumping order had been revoked. I don't know about the second case, but you might ask Norm, I just don't know enough about it.

Q: (inaudible) Is the U.S. going to be able to enforce its anti-dumping measures...

BARSHEFSKY: Oh, yes. I mean our [anti-]dumping measures are fully consistent with the WTO. That doesn't mean we may not be brought to dispute settlement, and if we lose, obviously we've got to conform. But the laws themselves, and the way they are administered, are consistent with the WTO.

What happens in the given cases, someone alleges, and that in that case, the way the law had been implemented was not quite right. And that's a legitimate complaint and if that happens and if we lose, we've got to comply. But the laws themselves are, I think, entirely, uh, are certainly, I don't think I know, are entirely intact.

(end transcript)

(Distributed by the Office of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)


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Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

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Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

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Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

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