US Fails to ‘Walk the Walk’ in Reinstating Dairy Export Subsidies

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The Chairman of the Dairy Companies Association of New Zealand, Malcolm Bailey, today expressed frustration and disappointment at the decision by the US Administration to reinstate export subsidies for US dairy products.

“The US has been saying all the right things in recent months about countries not resorting to protectionism in the face of the financial crisis, yet this decision suggests they aren’t listening to their own advice. They may talk the talk, but they are failing to walk the walk.”

“This is a bad decision on several fronts. Firstly, it will undermine confidence in the global market for dairy products which in recent weeks has been showing some signs of recovery. This in turn could hurt New Zealand’s dairy farmers who rely on the world market rather than subsidies for their incomes. Finally, at a time when the elimination of export subsidies remains on the negotiating table at the World Trade Organisation in Geneva, this is a lousy signal to the global trading system about US intentions.”

“The New Zealand dairy industry deserves better than this. Earlier this year the European Union reinstated its export subsidy system and now the US has followed suit with it’s Dairy Export Incentive Programme (DEIP). We can only hope that both come to their senses and realise it is time to set a good example and not to join each other on the slippery slope to protectionism,” said Mr Bailey.

For further information contact:
Malcolm Bailey, Chairman,
Tel: 021-741-165

Simon Tucker, Executive Director,
Tel: 021-961-394

About DCANZ:
The Dairy Companies Association of New Zealand (DCANZ) was formed in July 2003 to co-ordinate and represent the collective public policy interests of its member dairy companies. Its members comprise Fonterra Co-operative Group Ltd, Tatua Co-operative Dairy Company Ltd, Westland Milk Products, Fonterra Brands (NZ) Ltd, Goodman Fielder Ltd, Synlait Ltd, New Zealand Dairies Ltd and Open Country Dairies Ltd.