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on September 1, 2011

US, Mexico begin chicken anti-dumping hearings

Proposal to be submitted by Sept. 14, response by end of September

The U.S. and Mexican poultry industries began a dialogue on Aug. 29 in an effort to resolve Mexico’s anti-dumping case against imports of U.S. chicken leg quarters.

In February, Industrias Bachoco and two smaller companies petitioned to begin an anti-dumping investigation of imports of chicken leg quarters from the U.S., claiming that U.S. companies were exporting leg quarters to Mexico at below-market prices. About 37 U.S. poultry companies and trading companies joined the U.S. Poultry and Egg Export Council as participants in challenging the Mexican industry’s claims of dumping.

The USAPEEC presented a proposal during the hearing aimed at preventing trade disruptions while addressing the concerns of the Mexican government and its poultry industry. Both the petitioners and the Mexican government reacted favorably to the proposal. “Our legal team is quite pleased with the results of Monday’s hearing,” said Jim Sumner, president of the USAPEEC. “We accomplished everything we had hoped for and more. We look at the conciliatory hearing as the beginning of the process to start our discussions with the petitioners to develop a workable settlement.”

According to Hugo Perezcano, the chief of the Mexican Unit of International Trade Practices, the UPCI will publish its preliminary determination in the investigation on Sept. 30. This will provide the first real indication of how seriously the Mexican government takes the allegations of the petitioners. The preliminary determination will address three key issues – whether there was “injury” to the petitioners, whether there was dumping and whether interim duties will be assessed on U.S. companies exporting leg quarters to Mexico.

Perezcano asked that the USAPEEC, in consultation with the Mexican Poultry Producers Association, submit its proposal by Sept. 14. Bachoco will then have until Sept. 30 to respond to the proposal, with hope of reaching a consensus by Oct. 7. 

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