EU AND U.S. HEADING FOR STALEMATE ON BIOSAFETY PACT
January 20, 2000
THE HAGUE -- The European Union and the United States appear, according to this story, to be heading for stalemate at key talks next week on a deal to protect biological diversity and regulate trade in genetically modified crops. Senior U.S. agriculture officials, addressing a U.S. government-sponsored biotechnology conference on Thursday, were cited as saying there had been a thaw in transatlantic relations on the GM issue, although they acknowledged a compromise will be hard to find at the week-long talks in Montreal. Isi Siddiqui, adiviser to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Dan Glickman was quoted as telling journalists at conference on biotechnology that, "We are against any attempt to expand the agenda." Siddiqui added that the atmosphere between the United States and the EU on the divisive GM issue had improved, particularly since the visit last year by Commission President Romano Prodi to Washington, where he held talks with President Bill Clinton, adding, "Prodi has shown his desire to work with the U.S. administration."