The president of Costa Rica, Rodrigo Chaves, announced this Wednesday the lifting of the restriction on the importation of Mexican avocado that was in force since 2015a case that generated a bilateral dispute in which the World Trade Organization (WTO) agreed with Mexico.
“Costa Rica complies with international law, and in this context the resolution of the measure against the importation of Mexican avocados is being lifted”
“Costa Rica complies with and respects international law, and in this context, the resolution of the measure against the importation of Mexican avocados is being lifted,” Chaves said at the press conference after the weekly Governing Council.
The president assured that “with this we put ourselves in the right, consumers will be able to choose, we comply with the law, and we hope to be able to defend the country from possible economic sanctions of an enormous magnitude,” said Chaves.
In May 2015, Costa Rica decided to prohibit the importation of Mexican avocados of the Hass variety.considering that there is a risk of the “Sunblotch” plague entering the country.
In March 2017, Mexico requested the intervention of the WTO considering that Costa Rica’s measures unduly restrict avocado trade.
On April 13, 2022, the World Trade Organization (WTO) gave Mexico the reason in a large part of its argument against the restrictive measures imposed by Costa Rica on the importation of Mexican avocados, according to a ruling by an arbitration panel.
The panel of the Dispute Settlement Body determined that the phytosanitary risk assessment presented by Costa Rica and that served as the basis for limiting or prohibiting the importation of fresh Mexican avocados lacks sufficient scientific support.
The panel indicated that other arguments that were presented by Mexico were dismissed or were not examined because they were not essential and for the sake of “judicial economy.”
Chaves, who assumed the presidency of Costa Rica on May 8, said this Wednesday that his duty is to “correct the mistake that was made in public policies” and also “protect the country from even greater damage” in reference to possible financial claim.
Data from the Mexico-Costa Rica Chamber of Industry and Commerce (Cicomex) indicate that before the ban, Of the 15,000 tons of Hass avocado consumed in Costa Rica, 12,000 came from Mexico.