Measures Affecting Importation of Bovine Meat and Meat Products from Canada

Status: Concluded

Subject: Agricultural Products,

Respondent: Korea

Complainant(s): Canada,

Third Parties: Argentina, Brazil, United States, China, Chinese Taipei, European Communities, Japan, India,

Dispute Number: DS391

Link to Dispute Site:


Complaint by Canada. 

On 9 April 2009, Canada requested consultations with Korea concerning measures affecting the importation of bovine meat and meat products from Canada.  According to Canada, since May 2003 Korea prohibits the importation of Canadian bovine meat and meat products.  The alleged objective of this prohibition would be that of protecting against risks arising from bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE).

Canada challenges two measures:

  • Administrative Order No. 51584-476, which entered into force on 21 May 2003, and would prohibit the importation into Korea of bovine meat and meat products from Canada;  and

  • Korean Act No. 9130, amending the Act on the Prevention of Contagious Animal Diseases (also known as the Livestock Epidemic Prevention Act), which entered into force on 11 September 2008, and would set out a number of conditions for lifting the import ban, including subjecting any import health requirements for the importation of Canadian bovine meat and meat products to the approval of the Korean National Assembly (Korea's national legislature).

For each of these measures, Canada's request would also cover any amendments, replacements, extensions, implementing measures or other related measures.

Canada argues that the measures at issue are inconsistent with the SPS Agreement and the GATT 1994, including the following provisions:

  • Articles 2.2, 2.3, 3.1, 3.3, 5.1, 5.5, 5.6, 5.7, 6.1, 8 and Annex C of the SPS Agreement;  and

  • Articles I:1, III:4 and XI:1 of the GATT 1994.

On 23 April 2009, the European Communities requested to join the consultations.

On 9 July 2009, Canada requested the establishment of a panel.  At its meeting on 20 July 2009, the DSB deferred the establishment of the panel.

Panel and Appellate Body proceedings

At its meeting on 31 August 2009, the DSB established a panel.  Brazil, Japan, Chinese Taipei and the United States reserved their third party rights.  Subsequently, Argentina, China, the European Communities and India reserved their third party rights.  On 4 November 2009, Canada requested the Director-General to compose the panel.  On 13 November 2009, the Director-General composed the panel.


Panel Proceedings
Brief Date Brief Description
05/05/2010 U.S. Answers to the Questions of the Panel following the Meeting with the Third Parties
04/14/2010 Third Party Oral Statement of the United States
12/14/2009 U.S. Comments on Korea’s Preliminary Ruling Request