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Parliamentary questions
10 March 2009
WRITTEN QUESTION by Corien Wortmann-Kool (PPE‑DE) to the Commission

 Subject: The Buy American clause in the US economic stimulus plan and WTO rules

On Friday, 22 February 2009, the President of the United States, Barack Obama, signed an Act concerning a package of measures to stimulate the US economy. One element in this package is a ‘Buy American’ clause, which makes it possible to exclude foreign steel suppliers from American public procurement procedures.

On 26 January 2009, Pascal Lamy, Director-General of the World Trade Organisation, published a report on a study in which the WTO sought to ascertain whether the national stimulus measures taken all over the world conflicted with WTO rules. Various Members of the European Commission have also confirmed that the Commission will not permit the Member States to take protectionist measures, as the Commission must be vigilant to avert any erosion of the internal market within the EU.

Can the Commission indicate whether the Buy American clause violates WTO rules?

What steps will the Commission take to draw the Americans' attention to this?

Is the Commission considering complaining to the WTO about the action of the United States?

What is the Commission's response to the call by President Sarkozy of France for measures to be taken in Europe to protect European industry in imitation of the US stimulus package?

Original language of question: NLOJ C 189, 13/07/2010
Last updated: 13 March 2009Legal notice