Brazil complains of EU protectionism

01-09-2006 | |

Brazilian poultry exporters say the European Union is planning to impose protectionist tariffs on processed products, including salted chicken breast, processed chicken and turkey.

Brazilian poultry meat exporters have accused the EU of preparing to adopt protectionist measures to stop increased Brazilian chicken meat exports, which have been growing at 20 percent per year according to the Brazilian Association of Chicken Producers and Exporters (ABEF).

The EU is expected to announce the export quotas on September 15.

“The protectionist measure is seen by the sector as below the belt and could complicate negotiations between the European Union and Mercosul, seeing as the Europeans have shown a lack of willingness to open up their agribusiness market,” the ABEF said.

Exports that exceed the quota will have to pay a tariff of Euro 1,024 per metric ton in the case of processed meats and Euro 1,300 per metric ton for salted breast meat. According to the ABEF, the European Union takes in 87 percent of all Brazil’s processed poultry exports.

“The Europeans say they want to get back to negotiations with Mercosul, but a protectionist measure like this shows they have no intention of discussing the opening up of farming,” Ricardo Gonçalves, president of ABEF, remarked.

The imposition of new tariffs on processed poultry products is causing similar concern in the poultry processing industry in Thailand that also has a significant export trade with the European Union.

Officials from Brazil and Thailand met recently to discuss the poultry tariffs, and bilateral trade between the two countries.