The World Trade Organization is opening a panel on the dispute between the USA and India over measures concerning the importation of certain agricultural products due to avian influenza concerns.

India's avian influenza trade measures prohibit the importation of various agricultural products into the country from those countries reporting notifiable avian influenza, both highly pathogenic and low pathogenic.

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The USA is arguing that the measures are inconsistent with the country's commitments and obligations to various provisions of the Sanitary and Phytosanitary Agreement and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994, and that they have adversely affected exports of a variety of poultry products from the USA.

Among reasons stated by the USA for requesting the panel are that India's measures are more restrictive than required and are not based on science. The country also notes that India arbitrarily discriminates between WTO members where similar conditions occur and does not consider disease free areas.