The United States filed a complaint against Argentina's trade barriers at the World Trade Organization Thursday, joining Japan and the European Union in an attack on Buenos Aires's import licensing rules.
Washington asked the WTO to launch a dispute resolution panel over the issue, arguing that Argentina's rules "include the broad use of non-transparent and discretionary import licensing requirements that have the effect of unfairly restricting US exports."
"Argentina further disadvantages US exports by requiring importers to agree to undertake burdensome trade balancing commitments in exchange for authorization to import goods," the US Trade Representative said.
Bilateral talks on trade differences in September failed to resolve the problems, the USTR said.
The move came one day after Argentina filed WTO complaints charging the United States with erecting trade barriers against its beef and lemons, and the European Union with protectionist measures against its biodiesel.
US trade barriers have caused "extensive damage" to Argentine producers and cost thousands of jobs, Buenos Aires said.