Canada and the European Union (EU) have formally requested World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute consultations with the United States regarding U.S. duties on certain imported steel and aluminium products.

The EU and Canada claim in their separate filings that the U.S. duties of 25% and 10% on imports of steel and aluminium products respectively are inconsistent with provisions of the WTO’s General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 1994 and the Agreement on Safeguards.

A request for consultations formally initiates a dispute in the WTO. Consultations give the parties an opportunity to discuss the matter and to find a satisfactory solution without proceeding further with litigation.

After 60 days, if consultations have failed to resolve the dispute, the complainant may request that the WTO establish a dispute settlement panel to examine the matter.