Dow Agro presses NAFTA pesticide case against Canada

10 April 2009 22:27  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS news)--Dow AgroSciences has decided to go ahead with a NAFTA case against Canada over a pesticide ban in Quebec, according to Canadian news media and a notice by Canada’s foreign affairs ministry on Friday.

The company decided to sue Canada for Canadian dollar (C$) 2m ($1.6m, €1.2m) because of a Quebec ban in 2006 on Dow pesticide 2,4-D, state television Radio Canada and the country's Globe and Mail newspaper reported, citing a company official.

Separately, the ministry posted a document by Dow’s lawyers, dated 31 March, on its website, confirming it received notice of the case against the government.

A spokesperson for Dow AgroSciences Canadian offices in Calgary, Alberta, was not available for additional comment due to an official holiday.

Last October, Dow filed a notice of intent to bring a claim under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). At the time, Dow said the ban was imposed without any scientific basis and as such contravened NAFTA rules.

Dow’s case against the federal government comes as number of Canadian municipalities, including Toronto, as well as the Ontario provincial government, have implemented or are planning bans on cosmetic pesticide products, even though the products are permitted for sale under Canadian federal laws.

In 2005, a NAFTA panel rejected a similar NAFTA claim for compensation brought by Canada-based methanol producer Methanex against the US over California's ban of gasoline additive methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE).

($1 = C$1.23 = €0.76)

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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