The WTO will rule on a dispute brought by Indonesia against the United States over a ban on sales of Indonesian clove cigarettes, trade sources said on Tuesday.
A panel was established on Tuesday, July 20th sources said after a meeting of the WTO's Dispute Settlement Body.
Washington (US government) has banned the production and sales of clove cigarettes under a health act that also blocks the sales of other flavoured cigarettes such as grape, coffee or strawberry, in a bid to prevent the young from getting hooked on smoking.
But Indonesia argued that the act had not been applied uniformly as it did not cover menthol cigarettes. Underlining the importance of the clove cigarettes industry to the country, Indonesia claimed that the livelihoods of over six million Indonesians depend directly or indirectly on their production.
Reference: WTO to rule on clove cigarette row, The Sydney Morning Heral - Agence France-Presse (AFP), 7/21/2010.
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Had to add this great image.. Did banning clove cigarettes violate trade laws?, Posted By Joshua Keating, ForeignPlicy.com, 7/21/2010.
Click to enlarge..