GENEVA (AP) -- The World Trade Organization ruled largely against the United States on Wednesday in a dispute over American dumping charges on imports of 52 European products, from stainless steel and ball bearings to pasta.
Washington broke international trade rules in dozens of instances in determining what fees to apply on goods from the European Union, a three-member WTO panel said in a verdict released Wednesday.
For some imports, though, the panel found the U.S. had not broken any agreements or declined to assess the EU's claims.
Governments investigate dumping when they suspect that producers are exporting products at below-market price in their own country -- usually because exports have been subsidized, or if it is believed that there is an attempt to corner the market.
The WTO has consistently chided the U.S. in disputes with the 27-nation EU, Canada and others for how it determines the fees, known in trade jargon as "zeroing." Experts have consistently found that zeroing leads to artificial and inflated margins of dumping, and thus unfairly high duties.
The EU welcomed the decision, saying it was "pleased that the panel has condemned the continued use of zeroing by the U.S. in a large number of measures taken against EU exporters."
"The U.S. should not be surprised by today's report," EU spokesman Peter Power said in a statement. "We now expect the U.S. to comply with the ruling and put an end to all remaining illegal practices."
WTO cases can result in punitive sanctions, but must go through years of process to reach that point.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said parts of the WTO decision were "poorly reasoned." Washington has yet to decide on whether it will appeal, spokeswoman Gretchen Hamel added.