GENEVA — Japan and Australia lodged public complaints against the United States on Tuesday over what they claimed were unfair trade practices, according to a spokesman for the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade.
Japan said a 100% tariff that Washington imposed on some Japanese electronic goods infringed provisions of the GATT, an international trade group of which Japan and the United States are members. The duties were imposed in April in retaliation for alleged Japanese violation of a bilateral agreement on trade in semiconductors.
Australia, a major farm products exporter, said a U.S. decision to increase farm export subsidies, announced July 30, also broke an agreement reached in GATT talks in Uruguay last year that such subsidies not be raised.
Australian Ambassador Alan Oxley said the U.S. announcement "has an ominous potential to create more instability and to invite further retaliation."