EU arms itself against U.S. and others in trade disputes

By Reuters

The European Union will arm itself with potential punitive tariffs against the United States and other rivals if they take advantage of World Trade Organization paralysis and refuse to settle trade disputes. The European Commission, European Parliament and the European Council, which represents the 27 EU governments, agreed on Wednesday on a new enforcement law to protect the bloc's interests in cases that would normally be handled by the WTO. The WTO's Appellate Body, which has acted as a supreme courtfor international disputes, became paralysed last December after Washington blocked new appointments and left it with too few adjudicators to make new rulings.

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