The European Union wants more information about U.S. subsidies on biodiesel. The inquiry stems from a European Biodiesel Board (EBB) complaint at the end of April that American subsidies were unfair trade practices (see my April 25th post).
Now, according to this Reuters story, the EU is formally looking into the EBB charges:
“The Commission is in contact with the United States to clarify certain details regarding U.S. production,” an European Union diplomat said on Monday.
“This is an initial prerequisite to any move the Commission may take in this area,” the diplomat said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
European biodiesel producers in April asked the Commission to impose duties on biodiesel imports from the United States on the grounds they broke international trade rules.
The National Biodiesel Board calls the charges hypocritical:
The head of a U.S. biodiesel group accused the EU sector of trying to use litigation for protectionist ends and said his group would “aggressively challenge” EU trade obstacles.
“It is hypocritical for the European Biodiesel Board to cry foul while they benefit from a blatant trade barrier,” said Manning Feraci, vice president of federal affairs at the National Biodiesel Board.
Feraci vows the NBB will aggressively challenge the EU trade barriers already in place.