Indonesia loses WTO appeal in halal food fight with New Zealand and US

Indonesia had argued before the WTO that its rules were based on health concerns and halal food standards, or aimed to deal with temporary surpluses in the domestic market. (Reuters)
Updated 10 November 2017
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Indonesia loses WTO appeal in halal food fight with New Zealand and US

GENEVA: Indonesia lost an appeal ruling at the World Trade Organization on Thursday in a dispute with the US and New Zealand over Indonesia’s restrictions on imports of food and animal products including beef and poultry.
Indonesia had argued that its rules were based on health concerns and halal food standards, or aimed to deal with temporary surpluses in the domestic market. In December 2016, a panel of adjudicators faulted Indonesia, which appealed.
An Indonesian trade ministry official said the government would study the ruling before easing any restrictions, which cover products such as apples, grapes, potatoes, onions, flowers, juice, dried fruit, cattle, chicken and beef.
“The Indonesian government will study and conduct internal coordination related to the recently circulated Appellate Body Report, including its implications for current regulations,” Oke Nurwan, Indonesia’s director general of foreign trade, said.


Hong Kong economy cools as trade tension mounts

Updated 16 November 2018
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Hong Kong economy cools as trade tension mounts

HONG KONG: Hong Kong’s economic growth slowed in the latest quarter and the government warned it could face headwinds from US-Chinese trade tension and higher interest rates.
Government data Friday showed the Chinese territory’s economy expanded by 2.9 percent over a year earlier, down from the previous quarter’s 3.5 percent.
Exports rose 5 percent over a year earlier, but the government said the impact of trade tension and weaker global demand “has begun to surface” and is “likely to become more apparent in the near-term.”
The government said Hong Kong also faces a drag from higher interest rates. The Hong Kong dollar has a fixed exchange rate with the US dollar, which requires the central bank to raise interest rates along with the US Federal Reserve even though economic growth is slowing.