At a meeting of the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) on July 26, WTO members agreed to the establishment of a panel at Canada’s request to examine measures in China affecting the import of canola seed from Canada.

Canada submitted its second request for the establishment of a dispute panel to examine two sets of measures affecting the importation of canola seed from Canada, in response to alleged repeated detection of quarantine pests in shipments from two Canadian companies. Canada’s first request was blocked by China at the last DSB meeting on June 28.

Canada reiterated that it was disappointed and concerned that sufficient scientific evidence to justify China’s canola measures had not been provided. Canada noted China is an important export market for Canadian canola seed, and China’s restrictive measures continue to have a serious, negative impact on Canadian producers.

China said it regretted Canada’s decision to submit a second request for a panel, saying it had constructively engaged with Canada on this matter and responded to Canada’s request for information. China claims it has intercepted diseases, insects and weeds from canola seed from Canada for a long time and its concerns remain.

The DSB agreed to the establishment of the panel.