Canada, EU Settle Biotech Food Dispute

GENEVA (AP) -- The EU and Canada have signed a deal ending a long-standing trade dispute over genetically modified food imports.

Canada, the United States and Argentina have argued for six years before the World Trade Organization that European biotech rules barred virtually all their exports of genetically modified foods, creating an unfair trade barrier.

Under the deal, the EU and Canada will set up an expert panel with members from both countries to speed up genetically modified food imports from Canada. Ottawa will drop further trade action at the World Trade Organization.

The EU and Canada signed the agreement Wednesday.

EU Trade Commissioner Catherine Ashton says she hopes the United States and Argentina also sign such a deal.

Canadian, U.S. and Argentine exporters claim they have lost millions of dollars due to the EU rules.