Ministers block Commission’s banana proposal

During the General Affairs Council on 10 July, France, Spain, Portugal, Greece and Ireland blocked the Commission’s new banana strategy.

During the General Affairs Council on 10 July, France, Spain, Portugal, Greece and Ireland blocked the Commission's new banana strategy. The Commission had asked the Council for a mandate to begin negotiations with banana suppliers on a flat tariff system. But the Council urged the Commission to seek an agreement for a quota regime in which licences would be distributed on a "first-come, first-served" basis.

The current banana import regime of the EU favours the ACP states (mostly former colonies and overseas territories). Since the WTO declared the system illegal in 1997 because it discriminates against the so-called dollar bananas from the US and Latin America, the Commission is trying to find a compromise solution, which would at the same time comply with the rules of WTO and protect interests of the ACP states.

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