U.S. Trade Representative Sets Up Dispute Panel over Mexican Corn Ban

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, under procedures within the U.S. Mexico-Canada Agreement, has established a dispute resolution panel regarding Mexico’s biotech corn bans. Dave Salmonsen, American Farm Bureau Federation Senior Government Affairs Director, explains.

“This will deal with the issues brought up by Mexico’s decrees which seek to stop the import of U.S. corn products produced with biotechnology. The U.S. believes this is a violation of the sanitary standards provisions of the USMCA and has brought this case.” 

The issue revolves around Mexican decrees against U.S. corn products produced with biotechnology, specifically glyphosate.

“Recent decrees earlier in 2023 said that they were going to move ahead to stop the import of white corn but would allow the imports of U.S. yellow corn until they could find some alternatives. The U.S. has objected to these decrees all along, saying that they’re not scientifically based, and has been talking with the Mexican government all along, but especially ramped up the discussions last year.” 

A resolution could come early next year, following technical consultations this year.

‘The time for that under procedures in the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement has run out, so the Trade Rep’s office is establishing a dispute panel. This will hear evidence from the two countries and make a final decision. Given the procedures governing such panels, a decision really can’t be expected until sometime in early 2024.”