WTO rules GEA’s buy-local requirements violate global trade laws

Ontario Wind Resistance

By Stuart Trew And Angelo Dicaro, The Windsor Star
The embattled Green Energy Act is about to be pummelled once more, this time by the World Trade Organization. The big loser will not be the McGuinty government, but the thousands of workers who have found jobs in Ontario’s newest industry, and the very concept of sustainable development.

How the Ontario and federal governments respond to this WTO loss will be a key test of their seriousness about creating good Canadian green jobs for the future.

A preliminary WTO panel ruling in the challenge by Japan and the European Union against local content rules (“buy local” provisions) in Ontario’s landmark renewable energy policy has leaked out a month before anyone expected it. According to reports, the WTO has ruled these buy-local requirements in violation of global trade laws that forbid governments from treating imported goods less favourably than domestic goods.

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