Geneva - Brazil has taken the first legal step at the World
Trade Organisation to challenge South Africa's use of anti-dumping measures on
shipments of Brazilian poultry meat, the global trade body said in a statement
Brazil has "requested consultations" with South
Africa over South Africa's accusation that Brazilian imports were
"dumped", or sold at an unfairly low price that damaged South
Africa's own poultry sales, the WTO said.
If the consultations fail to resolve the issue, in 60 days'
time Brazil could ask the WTO to set up a panel to adjudicate.
The statement did not give any more details, but South
Africa's International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC) has imposed anti-dumping
duties on frozen chickens and chicken meat imported from Brazil after
investigating suspected dumping in 2008-2010.
In 2010, Brazil accounted for 94.2% of South Africa's total
26,916 tonnes of boneless chicken imports and 44.6% of the total 29,039 tonnes
of whole chicken imports, ITAC's investigation report said in January.
After calculating the extent of the unfair competition,
South Africa put a provisional anti-dumping duty of 62.93% on whole chickens
and 46.59% on boneless cuts from Brazil, except for boneless cuts from Aurora
Alimentos, which would incur a duty of 6.26%.
The dispute is the first between Brazil and any African
country and only the fourth brought against South Africa at the WTO.
All of the previous three cases, brought by India, Indonesia
and Turkey, also concerned South Africa's use of anti-dumping measures to
protect its market from unwanted imports.
None of those three disputes advanced to the panel stage.
India and Turkey did not press their cases and Indonesia withdrew its challenge
after South Africa withdrew its anti-dumping measures.