The Channel logo

News

By | John Oates 20th August 2008 09:55

US, EU tech trade row gets serious

Formal objection made

The US has made a formal request for the World Trade Organisation to review technology import definitions which it accuses the EU of using for protectionist purposes.

The row has been going on for some time over the issue of definitions included in the International Technology Agreement. The US government accuses Europe of over-zealously defining devices as outside the ITA and therefore subject to taxes.

US trade ambassador Susan Schwab said: "We regret that formal consultations have not been successful in resolving our concerns over the duties that the EU is imposing on several high-tech products.”

The EU denied this when the first complaint was made in May and said it could only renegotiate the ITA if all signatories wanted to.

The disagreement focuses on whether a set-top box which includes hard disc recording should be defined as a video recorder, and whether an LCD screen is purely a computer monitor or also a consumer product when designed for use as a TV or DVD screen.

The final category of disagreement is that of multifunctional copiers, which was to cover all copiers but then was tweaked to exclude two types. ®

comment icon Read 16 comments on this article alert Send corrections

Opinion

Houses of Parliament in night-time

Andrew Orlowski

Come on everybody, let's upload all our stuff into Government by Cloud
Joe Tucci EMC
frustration_anger_irritation_annoyance pain

Felipe Costa

Pressure to perform for stock market bearing down on disties

Features

Alistair Darling and Alex Salmond debate Scottish independence
You keep the call centres, Hamish, we'll take the banks
Internet of Things
Everyone loves those Things, just not on each others' terms
No email? No CRM? No Daily Mail iPad edition? You need a plan
Sinofsky's hybrid strategy looks dafter than ever