Indonesia’s steps to change licensing requirements hindering imports of key US agricultural products are unsatisfactory, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) said yesterday.
The US requested loosening of Indonesia’s licensing restrictions in January 2013 and again in August, however, Michael Froman from the United States Trade Representative (USTR) said Indonesia’s latest revisions still don’t comply with WTO negotiations, limiting US businesses’ access to Indonesia’s markets.
“Indonesia revised its import licensing requirements in response to action by the United States at the WTO,” Froman said in a statement released on Thursday. “Unfortunately, the revised system still appears to breach WTO rules and restrict US agricultural exports.”
At the moment, Indonesia’s import licensing requirements impede imports of products including fruits and vegetables as well as animal products. According to the USTR, current restrictions prohibit importation of horticultural products harvested more than six months ago as well as importing products when there is sufficient domestic production.
Froman said the US is requesting new WTO dispute settlement consultations with Indonesia, adding that New Zealand would join the complaint process.