Japan may seek WTO help on Taiwan's seafood ban

Japan may seek WTO help on Taiwan's seafood ban

Japan's Foreign Minister Taro Kono says his country will consider using the World Trade Organization's dispute settlement procedures to address Taiwan's continued ban on Japanese food imports following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident.

In a referendum held on November 24th, an overwhelming majority of Taiwanese voters voted in favor of continuing the import ban on food from Fukushima and 4 surrounding prefectures.

Kono told a gathering in Morioka City, northern Japan on Sunday that the import restrictions are not based on scientific evidence, but are being used for political purposes.

He said it is highly regrettable that Japanese products cannot be exported because of that.

Kono said it is against the WTO rules to let a referendum decide these kind of matters, and that, if needed, Japan will utilize the mechanism in place to file a complaint with the WTO.